The Holiday season is nearly upon us, and Black Friday shopping is just around the corner. You’re probably thinking about what to get your friends and family (or yourself), but don’t ignore your coworkers.
The tech who goes above and beyond every day, or the pharmacist who’s covered for you several times this year, they deserve a little something. Even that odd guy who’s late every day or your boss who has never said anything nice about you deserves a gift. But what do you get them? Fear not, dear reader, we’ve got your back.
These are gifts that every pharmacy professional can use, from the lowliest tech to the loftiest of pharmacy bosses. Everyone likes getting stuff, but getting something tailored to them makes it that much better.
And remember: the best gifts are the ones that ultimately benefit you.
Up next: Give the gift of easier conversation
1. Avoiding Awkward Conversations
Picture this: You’re away on vacation or at a conference. You’re staying in a nice hotel, and decide to pop down to the lobby for brunch.
You sit down with your food and begin to eat, and notice that the person sitting next to you is opening up a container with some pills. You see him drop some on the table, and think you can just make out a couple of the drugs. He palms what looks like a statin … and then reaches for a very large glass of grapefruit juice at his table. Terrible mistake.
“Didn’t his doctor or pharmacist warn him?” you think. But he’s about to down the glass. Do you say something? You don’t know this guy. Do you think he’ll believe that you’re a pharmacist? How will he know you’re not just some creep who hates grapefruit juice?
Cue the jewelry. Something like these cufflinks, or maybe something like a charm bracelet, can be a great way to advertise that you know what you or your other pharmacy colleagues know what you’re talking about. This holiday season, consider giving the gift of fewer awkward social interactions at brunch, and your friends will thank you.
Image source: Cafe Press
2. The World’s Most Comfortable Shoes
This one is a no-brainer. How much of the day do you spend on your feet? Every pharmacist has, at some point, complained about not being able to sit down — take, for example, this pharmacist who worried about his ability to stand after back surgery.
So maybe the nicest gift you can give someone is a pair of comfortable shoes. Runnerclick, a website dedicated to reviewing shoes, voted this pair of Nike Tanjun running shoes as the most comfortable shoe to stand in all day.
And remember, for pharmacists who work behind a counter, the options really begin to open up. Fashion doesn’t matter, because only pharmacists see what happens behind the counter. If it looks comfortable, go for it.
If you choose to go big and cover the floor with 200 pounds of cotton balls as a holiday treat for the whole staff, more power to you (though maybe double-check the OSHA handbook first).
Image source: Amazon
3. A Trip
Pharmacy is an ancient and storied tradition, and what better way to experience that tradition than with a little art.
You don’t have to look too hard to find pharmacists in art. Take The Marshall Apothecary from the "Great Moments in Pharmacy" collection located at the APhA headquarters, for instance. These paintings celebrate the history and culture of the pharmacy, and provide a fun way to look at how pharmacists have been helping people for thousands of years.
And if you’re wondering why someone might appreciate the gift of a trip to the local art museum or a flight to go see art somewhere else, consider the great impact this could have on someone. This pharmacy student, for instance, went to study art in France in a 6-week program. She found that art helped her appreciate her pharmacy work in a new way, and gave her tools to think about the way she approached problems.
If that’s not a good enough, you might also consider that a 6-week trip means that you don’t have to deal with your annoying supervisor for six weeks, and you’ll have earned at least a year of good grace. Can you really put a price tag on that?
Image source: APhA
4. Expressing True Feelings
Some people have no problem expressing how they feel to everyone they meet. Pharmacists don’t always have that luxury Â— after all, even the worst customers deserve their medication.
This season, give the gift of self-expression. The great thing about mugs, like the one above, is that they can be hidden around a hand or just left in the back. You might also consider gifting this t-shirt, which can be discreetly hidden behind a coat. The customer doesn’t have to know, but the pharmacist knows — isn’t that really all that matters?
Image source: Cafe Press
5. Never Having to Repeat Anything Again
Impossible, you say? Could you really never have to repeat, “No, I can’t fill your prescription early,” or “Your doctor literally just phoned this in, so give us a little time to get it ready” again?
Digital voice recorders like this one are pretty cheap these days, and will allow you to store hundreds of phrases like “No, I can’t just ‘Be cool this one time.’” Think of the wear-and-tear on your voice this could save!
When given as a gift, consider filling it with your favorite stock phrases so the person receiving the gift doesn’t have to worry about it. When that one patient comes in for the hundredth time in one day, it’s nice to know that there’s an answer ready.
Image source: Amazon
6. New Decorations
Signs like this can be a great addition to any pharmacist’s home or pharmacy. Wall art can come in a variety of themes and subjects (and price ranges), and can make a great gift for the pharmacist who you don’t know very well but still feel obligated to buy something for.
But there’s another option here as well. Buying decorations as a present can be the ultimate form of a gift benefitting the gifter. If your pharmacy hasn’t been updated since 1974, give the person in charge some art that would clearly not go with the store’s décor. Gift it this way: “I hope you like this! It might look a little weird against the fake wood veneer that’s been slowly peeling away since 2002, but I guess we’ll just have to live with it.”
Image source: Etsy
7. A Moment of Peace
Pharmacy work is stressful. Every pharmacist knows that. Wearing passive-aggressive t-shirts and comfortable shoes can only get a person through a small part of the day. Sooner or later, that terrible customer is going to come in, or you will be scheduled to work what seems like more hours than there are in a week, or you’ll mess something up and not know how to fix it.
Part of dealing with stress is having a moment of peace. These noise-cancelling headphones from Bose can be a great way to provide five minutes of solace in an otherwise hectic day. Don’t underestimate giving the gift of silence.
If headphones seem like an expensive ask, buy some good tea or a good book.
As a bonus, giving your annoying boss — who always seems to hear everything they’re not supposed to hear — a pair of these could help provide you with some much-needed peace and quiet.
Image source: Amazon