Welcome, to another episode of Long Distance Short. Today’s host, Sempronia, got to sit down with a valued Gift Baskets Overseas corporate customer Linda Kvaase, Senior Executive Administrator for Uniform. Linda is kind enough to open up about her experience sending gifts on behalf of her company using GiftBasketsOverseas.com. Together the two dive into the importance of corporate gifting, how to save time and effort with one-stop shopping, and the value of employee appreciation gifts.
Sempronia Hobgood: Hi Linda! I’m so glad to have you here and for our viewers who didn’t get to have our sort of pre-conversation. I’m speaking here today with Linda Kvaase from Uniform. She is one of our customers and has graciously allowed me the chance to get to interview her and speak to us today a bit about her experience with using Gift Baskets Overseas for her company’s gifts. So, Linda, to get us started, why don’t you tell us a bit about yourself and your company?
Linda Kvaase: Sure, my name is Linda Kvaase. I have been an executive assistant at several software companies. That’s been my role, I love my role. I love supporting the CEO. I also love instead of just doing calendar work and booking travel, I love getting my hands in a bunch of different things. And the company I work for right now, Uniform Systems, I have kind of a role where I’m doing HR work, and admin work, and finance work. And I get to have a fun job of ordering gifts for our employees, and also, some customers, and partners, and that sort of stuff. But it’s mostly for our employees.
Sempronia Hobgood: Wow! So you’re kind of a catch-all; that’s amazing. Your company is lucky to have you wearing that many hats, and before we dive into more about the gifts, I’m curious. Can you tell us a bit more about your company and what Uniform does?
Linda Kvaase: Sure! For me, not being a very technical person, Sometimes I find it kind of hard to describe what we do because it’s technical, right? But we’re a software company, and we help our customers. We help them, they’re marketing teams, and the developer teams work better to get together. What we have is a product that enables marketers to do stuff themselves to have no code and not need help from the developers for every project that they’re doing. We’re kind of like a visual workspace is kind of one way to describe it.
Sempronia Hobgood: Wow, as a marketer myself. I got to tell you being able to bridge that gap between the creative aspects and the tech aspects. I know are just difficult, so I imagine your company is quite busy. And I think you explained it quite brilliantly. I took a peek at your website, and I couldn’t have explained it better myself, and I thank you for being out there.
So our second question there, sort of, what’s your motivation behind sending these gifts. It sounds like you send them to employees and customers alike. So is this for holidays, rewards, or do you have maybe a couple of reasons that you send?
Linda Kvaase: So, the biggest use we have for sending gifts is um. So Uniform, was founded during the pandemic and where a hundred percent remote company. We have a couple of small offices, but we’re mostly all remote. So when we want to celebrate things like people’s birthdays and their anniversaries with Uniform since we’re not together most of us, the way we do that is we do a big shout out in the Slack channel, but we also send gift baskets.. So, we have a lot of employees in Europe in various countries, like one in each country. Literally. And when I first started this, it’s a big project to send two gifts a year to every employee. We have almost 70 employees, and a lot of them are in Europe.
I found your Gift Baskets Overseas and, it worked really well and I realized that this could be super helpful to me, because as I have added people into your database. And now I don’t need to go and do over each time. I actually am now getting reminders from you about “Hey, somebody’s birthday is coming up.” You need to send a gift, which I’m very grateful for.
Sempronia Hobgood: Awesome, and that reminder features fairly new. So I’m glad to hear that we already have customers getting use out of it and that it’s working well for you. And delighted to know that we’ve been helping you with your gifts since around the time your company started. You’ve been a customer with us for two years now. And as you mentioned, I actually did account you’ve sent gifts to 17 countries around the world. Which is just amazing to know that you juggle all of that. I’m curious to know if you’ve ever attempted sending gifts internationally before, if that’s something you’ve done before us at all.
Linda Kvaase: Yeah so, for some countries, I’ve typically worked with Scandinavian software companies. And being Norwegian myself, it’s easy for me to in Norway, and Denmark, and Sweden, go in just locally and order gifts. So that’s typically what I have done for those countries for other countries. I’ve, used Google trying to find someplace been more or less successful. But having a place where I can have everybody just go to one website for every single country, now that we have so many countries, is incredibly helpful. When you go to some country’s websites and try to send a gift, it doesn’t translate to English well, and it doesn’t take your American credit card address, right? So yeah, It’s helped make my life easier for sure.
Sempronia Hobgood: And that’s what we’re here to do. And I’m glad that we’ve been able to sort of bridge those gaps for you and for your team, I was gonna ask you what your favorite part about working with Gift Baskets Overseas is, but it sounds like you’ve kind of named it already. Do you have, maybe a runner up a second favorite thing about our brand?
Linda Kvaase: I think for me it’s just knowing that it’s not going to take hours because it is quite time-consuming the amount of gifts that I send. And so this is very helpful for me. I always find baskets that are, you know something that I think the person would like, for each country. And so, I think your selections are good. I think people have, I obviously never received one myself, but people seem to be very happy with the baskets that they get. I know delivery can be tricky in some countries, and I appreciate the way you keep trying or wherever your partnering within different countries. So yeah, I’ve been very happy.
Sempronia Hobgood: I’m so glad to hear that and you mentioned you haven’t got a basket before. So I’m gonna just ask if you were to get a basket from somebody kind of what would your ideal basket be just so we can drop some hints for people listening in.
Linda Kvaase: So I love wine baskets. And actually I did get a basket handed over by your CEO when I met him to just chat about how things were going. So I shouldn’t say, but I have never had one shipped, but I have seen some of the products that you do. In the US. I use a different vendor. I send wine and food obviously use you guys for overseas. I love getting a basket that has high quality. I’m more about quality over quantity. So a nice bottle of wine and just some simple but delicious good quality snacks to me is a perfect basket.
Sempronia Hobgood: You are a human after my own heart, there with the wine and snacks combination Knowing kind of now what gifts you like I’m curious to know, sort of what gifts do you tend to send and how your recipients receive them? Have you gotten any feedback or comments from them about sort of what they’ve enjoyed?
Linda Kvaase: So for most of the people, I send wine baskets. We have a few people who don’t drink alcohol, so then I make another choice obviously. But I’ve just had great feedback. Thank you for the wonderful basket and what a great surprise and of course, now they’re not surprised anymore because every birthday and every anniversity a basket shows up. But they seem very happy with the quality of what they receive and I like how I can also pick a date for it to arrive. That’s one feature that’s super helpful for me to be able to pick the date in advance.
Sempronia Hobgood: I’m not sure if anyone has told you this, but just in case it helps you or helps anyone listening, you can actually pick a date up to a year in advance, so if you wanted to do all of your birthday shopping at once you certainly could Or if you’re taking an extended vacation can, get that done before you go rather than worrying about it.
And you send this so often so often I’m curious to know how has sending gifts to your employees and other VIPs impacted kind of your relationships with them both working and with customers
Linda Kvaase: So as far as our employee, I think it’s a really nice benefit that we’ve decided to give our employees that we really want to, recognize them on their birthdays and recognize them on their anniversaries. Of course we also send if somebody gets married or if somebody has a baby, you know special occasions as well. But part of the benefits is that we want to be generous and we want to recognize those special days.
As far as customers I think the first time, when I started using you guys was, I’ve got hired in October, it’s almost, going on two years, and what I was doing was sending Christmas gifts. But I started in November and it was Covid and everything was a huge mess. So I think that first Christmas, it was just messy, but people did get their gifts eventually, and I think people expected absolutely nothing because of the way things work, and I think, yeah, our customers and partners were also happy with the gifts that they received.
Sempronia Hobgood: That Covid year was really a trial for everyone. Huge thank you to you and your recipients for sort of bearing with us and our couriers, while we, got that worked out. Luckily it’s been, much smoother sailing since fingers crossed it, it stays that way. One, final question for you, and no worries, if you don’t have an answer, a lot of people don’t think to do this. But do you somehow measure the success of your gift-sending campaigns? For example, seeing if your employee retention metrics, have gone up with you being a relatively new company, I’m not sure that that would be terribly obvious.
Linda Kvaase: Yeah, I don’t think that we have enough of a timeline to actually measure that because it’s something we offer upfront when we tell new employees, here are the benefits you will receive. This is part of the benefits. So of course they come to expect it, but they’re all mostly surprised and very happy when they’re told you’re gonna receive, these gifts twice a year.
Sempronia Hobgood: So you’re kind of the dream company to work for; you’re letting them know, right off the bat hey, we’re gonna appreciate the heck out of you if you work for us. So Thank you so much.
I think that’s such a wonderful thing. You know that your company does, I would point any new company kind of in your direction to follow your lead. Because I think that personal touch and being upfront about the kind of, reward and recognition that you’re going to get from the start is just so important, to employee morale and especially when you’re building a new company to stability. So thank you again for agreeing to come in and chat with me today and have this interview. I appreciate it. And I look forward to getting to work with your company for many years to come.
Linda Kvaase: That’s awesome. Thank you so much for being there and making gift-giving easy for me!
Wrapping Up Our Customer Interview About Successful Employee Appreciation Gifts
This has been another episode of “Long Distance Short” — your podcast for tips, tricks, and real-life stories of how to make the most of any long-distance relationship. If you want to learn more about a corporate gift campaign with GiftBasketsOverseas.com, you can email the team at [email protected], call toll-free from the US and Canada at 1 888 673-2822, or request a call by going directly to the website: www.GiftBasketsOverseas.com.
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