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Help! Been offered a gift by my employer.

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Wyattsgroove, Dec 13, 2012.

  1. Here's the deal, I put in my notice at work last June. I gave 6 months as my position is hard to replace as I work in a very specialized field that is becoming a lost trade in this country ( USA ). I was going to go work for another company who does the same type of work. So some time goes by and I get an email from the owner of my company. In short he says that in appreciation of the job I've done he wants to take me to the Gibson plant in Bozeman and build to my specs anything I want. So as it comes to bear this is only one incentive to stay with the company as I find out. After I agreed to stay with the company, and have, there is this issue. Gibson in Bozeman doesn't make basses. Look I like to play guitar but... I'm a bass player,and have been for 25 plus years. So what's the problem, many of you will ask? I really don't want an acoustic guitar. Why the offer of a guitar from Bozeman? Well he has a ranch there and he met some of the folks who work there and became friends with them. So I suspect he just wants to help the local economy, which is a great thing but......myself, I'd prefer a custom bass of my choosing. That people is where the pickle lies.

    How do I not offend a gesture of complete sincerity? I am not an ungrateful d**k, nor do I want to offend the the guy. I just know that an acoustic guitar, no matter how nice it may be, will sit in a case un used.
    Some may say "well you can sell it" or " just trade it off", problem is, I'm not like that and cherish the thought and the gift and could not bear the guilt of selling or trading it off.

    I'd much rather a custom built bass that I'd actually use. The real question is how do I play it, with out offending the gesture, and getting what actually what I really want? Or is it just what it is and do I just take the offer and shut up?

    As crazy as it may sound I'm about to say thanks, but no thanks!

    What would you do TB? This should be interesting.

    Again the deal is, all expense paid trip to the factory ( Gibson, Bozeman Montana), custom built guitar to my specs., money no object.

    Thanks in advance.
  2. Kmonk


    Oct 18, 2012
    South Shore, Massachusetts
    Endorsing Artist: Fender, Spector, Ampeg, Curt Mangan Strings, Nordstrand Pickups, Korg Keyboards
    You could just tell him that you appreciate the offer but you do not play guitar, you play bass and you would hate to see him spend money on an instrument that you do not play. Maybe he doesn't know that there is a difference between a guitar and a bass. He might offer you something else or ask what you prefer. (You could also tell him that I play guitar as well as bass and would be happy to make the trip)
  3. SirMjac28

    SirMjac28 Patiently Waiting For The Next British Invasion

    Aug 25, 2010
    The Great Midwest

    +1 Seems simple to me I bet the guy knows you play bass and is waiting for you to tell him to call the trip off and it could be some kind of test.
  4. This. Also, is the guitar/bass you end up with ENOUGH incentive to stay with the company? If the other job is better for you in the long run, I'd say focus more on that. Don't let a custom instrument pigeonhole you into a job you're not 100% happy with.
  5. boristhespider9


    Sep 9, 2008
    Geez dude, where do you work?
  6. your idol

    your idol

    Oct 13, 2008
    Columbus, OH
    Make me a Koa SJ250 monarch. I will trade you a bass for it
  7. +1

    And along with that... If they dont know you play bass vs. guitar... THEY JUST DONT KNOW YOU... AND ITS TIME TO GO! =) :scowl::smug:
  8. geoff_in_nc

    geoff_in_nc Supporting Member

    Dec 13, 2008
    Raleigh, NC

    Tell me this, would you be OK with it if you never got the guitar? In other words, are you willing to walk away from the gift totally without feeling like you should have gotten SOMETHING?

    I'd say tell your boss straight up that while you'd appreciate the guitar, you'd never use it... you're a bass player... you don't want to have the boss shell out money just to shell out money if a guitar's not going to do it for you.... can you and he work something out where you get something you would put to good use, and think of him warmly and fondly every time you use it? (Well maybe edit that last bit out... LOL) Then if it was me, I'd go for something custom but not crazy-expensive custom.... a little bit of a gesture to show you're valuing HIS gesture more than his money.

    My guess is he'll either say "sure, I want to give you something you'll like, and maybe I miscalculated with the Gibson guitar thought" or he'll say "**** you and the horse you rode in on. I'm not giving you anything now." Which is why I say above "are you willing to walk away from the gift?"

    Somehow I have a feeling he's coming from the angle of wanting to share something special to himself (Gibson Bozeman) with you. It's not just the money, its the experience involved. Like they say its not the destination, its the journey.... I'd say he values you above and beyond renumerations. Give him that gift back though, the gift of him seeing you be happy with what he's giving you... suggest he be involved or at least kept very aware of everything going on with the bass' build, from design to execution, to receipt and playing.

    Not sure if this is coming out clearly or not.
  9. Nev375


    Nov 2, 2010
    Talk about your first world problems....

    Just tell him you looked into Gibson Bozeman's offering's and they are unable to build build any instruments that you can play there. So you have decided to go ahead and part ways and he may cancel the trip.
  10. RichSnyder

    RichSnyder Alien Audio Fanatic!! Supporting Member

    Jun 19, 2003
    Columbia, Md
    Either get yourself a really nice guitar or tell him that you play bass and they only make guitars there. He obviously wants to do something nice for you and would probably rather get you something that you want rather than spending a lot on a guitar that you don't play.
  11. I'm not sure, but I don't think Gibson sells any guitars at the factory. All of the local sales go through a local music store called Music Villa. You could probably negotiate any kind of custom job through them. You might give them a call and see what the deal is.
  12. I wish my problems were like this. I agree with the others who say to just be honest but in a tactful manner. I would never take a gift as an incentive to stay with a company (well, it's easy to say things like that when I'm not the one stuck in the situation). He could be just being nice and trying to keep on an employee. You never know when nice things and gifts turn into leverage to manipulate you though. A few gifts here and there and when you have to say "no" or "bye" later it could get brought up again. If you think you'd be able to live with it if you were placed in that situation or would be willing to just give the gift back, then go for it (someone above offered to trade you a bass. Whether he was serious or not I have no idea). If not, then walk away. Perhaps I'm just paranoid, but I've had people try to manipulate me with gifts before and it's usually just not worth it.
  13. Tupac


    May 5, 2011
    With the money from a different job, you might be able to afford quite a few custom acoustic guitars. And of course, your happiness is worth way more than an instrument that will sit unused.
  14. TheEmptyCell

    TheEmptyCell Bearded Dingwall Enthusiast

    Jul 16, 2005
    Belfast, UK
    Tell him to donate money to people that actually need it, because clearly this asshat doesn't.

    If you don't like your job, and know theres one out there you'd be happier at, why would you let a f***ing bass guitar tell you to stay at a job you're displeased with?

    Sounds like greed all around, sorry dude.
  15. BawanaRik


    Mar 6, 2012
    New Jersey
    Wow. I find that the less the people at work know about me the better it is.

    I show up work and play the game. It isn't my life.
  16. Thanks for the replies so far. As said above, I feel part of the offer is related to an experience with the owner. As he said he would take me on a tour of the factory ( with an employee of the company of course) as he is personal friends with people there.

    As far as staying with my company? I've already made that decision. It is worth it. They have made a commitment to me as I have to them. The guitar is just icing on the cake that came out of the blue and was never expected. Believe me my jaw dropped so far I was catching flies as I read the email offering me the guitar. It was a personal gesture of thanks, outside of the company, wether I left or not, the offer stood.

    I don't want to look a gift horse in the mouth ( as my dad always said) yet just dont need a custom acoustic sitting in the closet.

    Regardless, I could care less to have someone buy me a high end guitar of any make. I could live without it. I'd rather work and save my own hard earned cash to buy what I want, as I always have. I honestly feel funny about having someone buy me someone so personal like this.

  17. mblackford


    Aug 3, 2012
    You could graciously accept the gift and very likely find you play the guitar more than you expected.
  18. neebs


    Oct 25, 2011
    Manteca, California
    That's a doozy huh?

    What are the terms of the other job to be more appealing than the current job?

    If the terms of both jobs where about the same, I think it would be nice to take the gift. Even though you don't play guitar, it'd give you incentive to want to learn.. ya know? Have a crafted instrument to your taste in your hands. (maybe you can sway them into making a short scale/piccolo bass.)

    But if you're just jumping out on a limb here, 'hoping' this other job will be better... I don't know man. Seems kinda risky, considering you say it's a dying field.

    edit: I think you should stay, tell him "I don't play guitar but play bass. But I do appreciate the gesture. And I would be honored to receive a gift like that."

    If he sees you as worth keeping, he likely sees you worth getting a gift of that expense.

    Unless... of course, you think he has malicious intent, but it doesn't seem like he does from what you said. But I wouldn't blame you for not stating unsaid malice considering the interwebs...
  19. two fingers

    two fingers Opinionated blowhard. But not mad about it. Gold Supporting Member

    Feb 7, 2005
    Eastern NC USA
    I don't know. Maybe you should just get a guitar. He's not connected with anyone at a factory that makes basses. I have been a strictly bass guy for years myself. But, a few months back, my bride got me a Martin acoustic. I have really enjoyed it! I'm even taking some lessons. And it has really expanded my view of bass playing as well. I'll always be a bass guy first. But that acoustic has gotten some quality playing time lately. (It doesn't hurt that every time I pick it up my 3 year old goes nuts and starts to dance.)

    Either way, congrats all around on keeping the job and the great gift! There's really no wrong answer here. Your boss seems like a great guy.
  20. bluestarbass


    Jul 31, 2007
    Treat it like art. Get a really cool j-185 then put it in a frame.