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7 Regifting Guidelines for the Holidays
Barbara Pachter - Business Etiquette Expert Barbara Pachter - Business Etiquette Expert
Cherry Hill , NJ
Monday, December 09, 2013


Contact: Joyce Hoff joyce@pachter.com

7 Regifting Guidelines for the Holidays

I was really pleased that the decorator for the office gave us a plant –until I found a note under one of the leaves that indicated the plant had originally been given to her.

Ouch. Is it okay to regift?

"In today's economy, regifting can be sound fiscal policy," according to Barbara Pachter, business etiquette expert and author of 10 books, including The Essentials of Business Etiquette: How to Greet, Eat, and Tweet Your Way to Success (McGraw-Hill, 2013). "Why let a perfectly good plant or fruitcake go to waste? Yet, how you regift is important. You always want the receiver of the gift to feel valued."

Here are Pachter's 7 guidelines for refined regifting:

1. Make sure the gift is appropriate. Don't just regift to get rid of the item. Give a gift that the person will like, use and enjoy.

2. Don't leave incriminating evidence on the gift. You don't want to damage your relationship with the person. Check the item carefully and remove any indication that you were given the gift previously.

3. Don't regift the giver's gift. "Oh, that looks familiar" is not what you want to hear when the person opens your gift! Keep a list of the gifts you have received and the gifts you have given.

4. Make sure the gift is in good condition. Check the item carefully and inspect the expiration date of food items. You may need to rewrap the gift, but don't use boxes that indicate the gift came from a specific store—when it didn't.

5. Be careful regifting items that the recipient may want to exchange, unless you have the gift receipt. The receiver of the gift may ask you where you purchased the item in order to exchange it for a different size or color.

6. Tell the person it's a regift, if the gift is really special for the person. A colleague regifted tickets to a concert that were her best customer's favorite band. She told him that she knew he would enjoy the show more. The customer was thrilled.

7. Be polite If you receive a gift that you know is a regift, you still say "thank you." And if the item isn't for you, follow the above regift guidelines.


Barbara Pachter, president of Pachter & Associates, has spent much of her career inspiring others to achieve professionally, whether through her ten published books – including the highly-acclaimed The Power of Positive Confrontation – or through her thousands of seminars for such clients as Microsoft, Chrysler, Con Edison, Wawa, Pfizer and Campbell Soup.

As an adjunct faculty member at Rutgers University, she was recognized with a Teaching Excellence Award. Pachter has appeared on national television, including Today, The Early Show and the news magazine 20/20, and has been featured in major publications such as TIME Magazine, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, providing suggestions on professional development and business etiquette.

For a review copy of Pachter's latest book The Essentials of Business Etiquette: How to Greet, Eat, and Tweet Your Way to Success, contact: Laura Yieh at McGraw Hill email: laura.yieh@mheducation.com.

For a free copy of Pachter's communication e-newsletter, "Competitive Edge," your readers can go to www.pachter.com.

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Barbara Pachter
Pachter and Associates
Cherry Hill, NJ
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