18 Perfect Gifts for the Busy Professional in Your Life

UPDATED: May 23, 2024
PUBLISHED: December 7, 2018

‘Tis the season for gifting, but ‘tis also the season for receiving odd presents from friends or family that we don’t really need. While I personally love receiving gifts of experiences over things, I also admit the beer tasting Groupon I got last year is still sitting on my fridge unclaimed because I haven’t had time to use it…

For the busy professionals in your life, I’m willing to bet this is a reoccurring theme. Because you can’t buy go-getters time, here is a list of things that will help make their lives easier, more organized and keep them on track. Which in a way is like giving them a little time.

For the Executive Who Doesn’t Sleep (Much)

Sleep directly correlates to productivity at work, so give this person something that will help them fall asleep faster, and get more quality zzz’s during the sleep they do log.

1. Pilgrim Teo Diffuser

This small but mighty ceramic and beech wood diffuser transforms any space into a relaxing oasis. The Teo ($80) offers two mist modes (intermittent and continuous) and ambient or meditation lighting to customize your sleep and aromatherapy needs. Pair it with Pilgrim’s ‘Rest’ Collection ($40) of essential oils to help combat insomnia and fatigue and fall asleep naturally.

2. Sleepy’s Cool Pillow

Sold exclusively at Mattress Firm, the Sleepy’s Cool Pillow ($99) supports you in all of the right places. As you sleep, the gel foam conforms to the curves of your head and neck, providing a gentle, uninterrupted sleep. With its cooling surface technology, it helps regulate your temperature while you sleep to ensure you will always be on the cool side of the pillow.

3. MM.Lafluer Silk Sleep Mask

Light interrupts your natural sleep rhythms and can make it hard to get quality sleep. The Silk Sleep Mask ($50) is made from 100 percent silk so your skin can breathe, yet it’s machine washable for convenience. Plus, you can bring it on your next flight to help you sleep while traveling.

4. Coffee Subscription

If your loved one can’t sleep, the gift of high-quality caffeine is the next best thing. Get coffee delivered to their home or office with one of these subscriptions:

  • Vega Coffee: Vega trains small-scale coffee farmers to roast and package their coffee into a finished good. Cutting out the middleman helps farmers earn up to four times more per pound, allows you to get premium coffee for less, and because coffee is delivered to you direct from origin within five days of roasting, it’s always fresh. Subscriptions start at $16.20.
  • Grounds & Hounds Coffee Co.: where every pound of fair-trade and organic specialty coffee contributes to saving rescue dogs. If the coffee doesn’t warm your heart, the thought of all of cute pups you’re saving will. Subscriptions start at $13.99 plus shipping.


For the Business Traveler Who’s Always on the Go

This person lives out of their carry-on, so don’t waste your money on full-sized gifts. Find this person items that have multiple functions to maximize their suitcase space.

5. Wrinkle-Proof Clothing

Clothes that are professional yet durable and comfortable for travel can be difficult for men to find. Rhone’s Commuter Pants  ($128) blend comfort and style, utilizing Japanese stretch fabric to bring sophistication to pants suitable for travel, work and life. The Bluffworks Gramercy Blazer ($235) looks like wool, but it is lightweight and breathable so you can endure a 12-hour flight and walk off the plane looking like a million bucks. Plus, this wrinkle-free blazer has 10 pockets to hold everything you need.

6. VIM & VIGR Compression Socks

Frequent flyers know all too well the unfortunate side effect of swelling feet on long-haul flights. VIM & VIGR makes stylish compression socks ($32.95) for men and women to alleviate swelling while still looking fashion-forward.

7. Ghurka Backpack

Travel in style with this hand-sewn Ghurka Blazer NO. 278 Backpack. Made with luxury leather, this backpack is the perfect size for travel—large enough to carry your laptop and elegant enough to bring straight into the corner office.


8. Henry Charles Compact Makeup Pouches

The Deluxe Cosmetic Clutch ($154) is a traveler’s dream, with multiple compartments for professional-size makeup brushes, makeup palettes and skincare all organized in one place. Henry Charles also offers a Small Pouchette ($42) for minimalists or quick trips. All bags are made with vegan and non-toxic materials and designed to sustain years of travel.

For the Tech-Obsessed Professional Who Always Has the Newest Gadgets

This person has the newest iPhone before it’s released to the masses. They repeatedly refer to Alexa as an old pal, and review everything online before making a purchase. Upgrade their life with these smart additions.

9. SOUL Electronics Run Free Pro Bio Earphones

The Run Free Pro Bio earphones ($112) are the world’s first A.I. earphones with GAIT Analysis technology to monitor your running form and share real-time voice coaching. These smart earphones utilize Beflex BiomechEngine® to analyze your running form and provide real-time suggestions that enhance your running efficiency and minimize the risk of injury, as well as track your run data for review after every run. When you don’t have time for a personal trainer, these headphones are a great alternative.

10. Brilliant Smart Light Switch

The Brilliant Control ($299) replaces any existing light switch to give you touch and voice control over your smart home products. With Alexa built in, your Brilliant light can tell you the weather, play music, control your lights, lock the door and more. Not a morning person? You can program it to turn on the lights at 6 a.m. as a gentle wake up call. Here’s a video of Brilliant in action.

11. Nonda’s ZUS Smart Car Devices

Nonda makes several smart car devices, like the ZUS Universal HD Audio Adapter ($39.99), which allows you to stream music, podcasts or conference calls from your phone to your car’s surround-sound speakers. (For professionals sporting an older vehicle, you can still use this without an AUX input.) Nonda also offers the ZUS Smart Car Charger ($35.99) that powers two devices twice as fast as normal chargers, monitors car battery health and automatically saves parking location.

12. Orbi Voice 

Paired with the Orbi WiFi router, which covers up to 4,500 square feet for less buffering and dead zones, the Orbi Voiceis a high-performance smart speaker that packs in capabilities like Amazon Alexa integration and a superior speaker powered by Harman Kardon. The Orbi Voice keeps your home organized and efficient, and can even order an Uber for you while you finish getting ready. You can purchase Orbi Voice Whole Home Mesh WiFi System on Amazon.

For the Entrepreneur Who Also Has a Day Job

This person may be somewhat of a workaholic, but in a good way. They’re passionate about their side hustle, but responsible enough to pay the bills with a regular 9-to-5. Gift this person something that can help them automate the parts of their life that don’t get enough of their limited attention.

13. iRobot Roomba 690

For the person who is too busy to clean, the Roomba 690 ($349) will clean your home while you’re away. The Roomba 690 uses Dirt Detect™ sensors to work harder on concentrated areas of dirt or high-traffic zones of your home. Plus, the robot will vacuum for 90 minutes before automatically returning to the Home Base® charging station to recharge when the battery is running low, so you never have to waste time looking for it.

14. Ultra 10-in-1 Instant Pot

The Ultra 10-in-1 Instant Pot (6-Quart) ($149) combines the functions of a pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, cake maker, yogurt maker, sauté/searing, steamer and more. Programmable options allow you to prepare healthy, home-cooked meals while spending significantly less time in the kitchen. Added bonus: The stainless steel inner pot, lid and steam rack are all dishwasher safe, so you’ll spend less time during cleanup.

15. Bristol & Sussex Products

Bristol & Sussex products ($25-$75) are made by doctors and biochemists for people who don’t have time for complicated beauty routines. Bristol & Sussex’s three steps—cleansing soap, pH and oil balancing moisturizer, and hydrating facial oil—take less than 4 minutes and encapsulate everything you need for healthy skin and a natural glow.

For the Professional Who Could Use Some Inspiration

When you’re deep in the daily grind, sometimes you need help seeing from a fresh perspective. These might help sprout new and inspiring ideas:

16. Léon & George Plants

Léon & George helps you add a breath of fresh air (literally) to your workplace with beautiful and hardy living houseplants, pre-potted and delivered to your door. The plants ($109+) are pruned and styled by interior design professionals so you don’t have to worry about not having a green thumb. All greenery is grown in the U.S. in native climates to ensure happy, healthy plants, and for every plant sold, funds are donated to help plant trees.

17. Pencilic Keyboard

This ergonomic wireless keyboard comes in three fun colors to boost your workspace vibe, while also improving your working position by placing your elbows closer to you as you type. Connected by Bluetooth, Pencilic KB3 – Wireless Keyboard ($89) can be used with computers, tablets and smart phones.

18. Books

There’s always something to be said for immersing yourself in someone else’s world to gain a new perspective on things. Some inspirational books and authors you might want to consider include:

Related: How to Give the Perfect Gift


Megan Nicole O’Neal is a writer with a passion for storytelling, traveling and whenever possible, mixing the two. The UCLA alum lives in Los Angeles; more specifically westside coffee shops with equally strong wifi and dark roasts. Connect with Megan on Twitter at @megan_n_onealor her website mnoneal.com.