Christmas 2011 Employee Gift

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LEGO Duck

Like many companies towards the end of each year, LEGO gives gifts to their employees to say "thank you" for all the effort the staff have put in throughout the year. Being LEGO, part of the gift involves an exclusive LEGO set ... last year it was the 'Happy Holidays' game, this year it is a reinterpretation of the LEGO classic wooden pull-along duck toy.

For those that don't know about the duck toy, it was one of the first toys produced by LEGO. Ole Kirk started making them in the mid-1930s, long before the company moved to manufacturing toys from plastic. It came in many slight variations, but they followed the same basic design, and the duck has become iconic of the early days of the LEGO company. You can see an example of one of the original wooden ducks by following this link (from the company museum in Billund).

28 comments on this article

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By in United States,

I always forget LEGO didn't make everything out of bricks, let alone plastic, to begin with. I was completely surprised that they started out as perhaps a "normal" toy company.

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By in Germany,

Wow. That's a near-perfect recreation of the duck. Apart from the closed beak and eyes (which are more towards the centre of the side of the head), it's just perfect!

EDIT: Actually, the beak is fine! The wooden version could open and close its beak!

EDIT 2: Do the factory workers get this set?

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By in United States,

Are these available to all employees such as retail stores, or just the more 'official' sort?

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By in United Kingdom,

Could any lucky soul who works for TLG share the instructions please?

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By in United Kingdom,

^^ not sure why you think the Brand Retail staff aren't 'official' employees ... anyway, yes, the permanent Brand Retail staff get it, as do *all* the permanent staff. I don't think temporary/seasonal staff receive it; in previous years they received something smaller (non-LEGO brick) instead.

It is only part of the overall 'gift package'; the other stuff varies from country-to-country & role-to-role, but I think this is the only unique LEGO-built item they get.

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By in Germany,

@bluemoose: EVERYONE? From the lowliest factory worker to the highest LEGO Store Managers?

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By in Germany,

Wait a sec. I didn't notice this because of the dark background, but the duck even has a ROPE! That's just PERFECT!

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By in United Kingdom,

^^ yes. Not to disparage them, but the store manager role isn't really that high in the overall LEGO staff hierarchy.

^ it's a pull-along duck ... a rope is pretty much fundamental to the whole concept :-)

@LegoCoastGuard - would you open it if you had one?

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By in Germany,

@bluemoose: I couldn't find something higher than a LEGO Store Manager as a permanent staff worker... :P Anyway, wow. LEGO care about everyone who works with them. Very caring. I bet Mattel doesn't do the same with their factory workers... :P

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By in United States,

As far I can see, the base and the eye would be the only pieces that would be hard to find.

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By in Germany,

@bluemoose and LegoCoastGuard: Don't open it: Sell it MISB at eBay or Bricklink in a few years and earn loads of money. ;)

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By in Germany,

One final question (I know it's late. :P): Do even the cleaning staff get the set? XD

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By in United Kingdom,

^ the cleaning staff aren't LEGO employees (at least not in the Brand Stores) - they are contract staff provided by a janitorial services company ... so, no, they don't get a company gift from LEGO. The same is probably true for some of the other 'service'-type jobs around the company.

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By in Germany,

@bluemoose: Ok then, goodnight. :P

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By in United States,

Wow, that's a really nice set! I was surprised to hear that factory/Lego store workers received these, I thought it was just those who worked at the 'Lego HQ' like designers and such. Really nice :)

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By in Australia,

This is just plan adorable. Out of curiosity and tangentially related, how frequently does LEGO reference their pre-construction toy history like this? In spite of how much they've taken to poking at classic Space lately, I can't think of any other instances in the past decade or so of referencing their work before the brick, and I'd like to think I haven't missed anything.

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By in Canada,

Great set. Wish I had the instructions.

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By in United States,

Very interesting set number! 2011... :)

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By in United States,

^LOL! How fitting!

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By in United States,

Nice set! Makes me want the original duck... :P

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By in United States,

I work for LBR and we didn't get this set. We got a set of 4 crystal glasses. Two etched with a LEGO brick and two etched with the duck.

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By in United Kingdom,

^ odd. My wife works for LBR & she, and the rest of the permanent staff where she works, were given this set earlier this week. She didn't get the crystal glasses. In past years the gift she has received has been in two parts - an exclusive Lego set & something more practical (usually kitchen-related) but not Lego-themed. This year the 2nd part is a food hamper from M&S; last year it was a salad serving set; the year before it was a very nice apron/tea towel/oven gloves set.

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By in United Kingdom,

@TooMuchLego - not really an interesting number at all; the set number for the 2010 staff gift was '2010', the set number for the 2009 staff gift was '2009', the set number for the 2008 staff gift was '2008' ... there's a pattern in there somewhere ;-)

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By in Germany,

@bluemoose: Wow, LEGO is in your family: You are a LEGO Ambassador, and your wife works for a LEGO Brand Store. :P

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By in United States,

ohhhhh, i cant wait to get mine!! i dont think ill be opening it tho. i havent opened any of them.

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By in Canada,

We got both the duck and the etched glasses... and the seasonal staff got them as well.

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By in United States,

Aw, I wish we had gotten the duck as well as the glasses but I can't complain about the glass set! It looks really nice.

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