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REPORT: Elves to Take Over American Offices Weeks Before Christmas

It may sound straight out of a Tim Allen movie or children’s Christmas e-book, but elves are actually moving in to help small businesses prepare for the busy holiday season — the only difference is, they’ll be ditching Santa’s signature color of crimson and trading it for TaskRabbit green.

Beginning October 27, Office Depot and OfficeMax are launching the Elf Who Helps Small Business contest to give select small businesses the assistance they need as they juggle daily tasks and prepare for growing business activity and office parities.

Powered by TaskRabbit, a peer-to-peer marketplace that helps Clients get things done like home and office services and skilled tasks, Elf Who Helps will give the winning small businesses the boost they need to close out the year feeling organized and ready to tackle 2015.

Now through November 12, small business owners and employees can participate by visiting the Elf Who Helps website and submitting, in 150 words or less, what task they need assistance with and how it will help them. Fourteen small businesses will be selected to receive a variety of products and a $1,000 gift card supplied by Office Depot and OfficeMax to organize their businesses, as well as up to two days of on-site services from TaskRabbit.

The Elf Who Helps Small Business is part of the overall ‘Office Depot and OfficeMax Your Holiday Workshop’ campaign to ensure businesses and individuals are prepared to give the right gifts to everyone on their list and satisfy their everyday office needs, all at a one-stop shop and at a great value. From gifts under $20 to personalized items such as designer holiday and photo cards, photo canvases and calendars, and convenient in-store mailing and shipping via UPS, FedEx and USPS, Office Depot and OfficeMax have some of the seasons most sought after gifts and services at great values. A go-to gift-giving headquarters, Office Depot and OfficeMax will also have extended shipping hours.

To enter the Elf Who Helps Small Business contest, please visit www.elfwhohelps.com. Contest ends November 22 and winners will be announced on December 8. Official contest rules are as follows: No purchase or payment necessary to enter or win. A purchase will not increase your chances of winning. Void where prohibited by law or regulation. Contest is open to legal US/DC residents (18) years of age or older and who either own or is an employee of a small business are eligible to enter the Contest on behalf of an eligible Small Business. Entry begins on 10/22/14 at 12:00:01 a.m. EDT and ends on 11/12/14 at 11:59:59 p.m. EST. All eligible entries will be judged to determine up to (14) winning entries. Winners announced 12/8/14. Sponsor: Office Depot, Inc., 6600 North Military Trail, C513B,Boca Raton, FL 33496. For important terms, conditions and Official Rules visit www.elfwhohelps.com.

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TASK OF THE WEEK: DELIVER COOKIES TO MY FUTURE ROOMMATES

Finding an apartment in San Francisco is challenging, to say the least. So, when Scott found a room that he loved (“14 foot ceilings! Sweet back patio!”), he wanted to put himself ahead of the other applicants and turned to TaskRabbit for help. Tasker Rick purchased a box of cookies from a local bakery and delivered them to Scott’s potential roommates, along with a note proclaiming Scott to be an “exceptional third slice of the roommate pie.” No word on whether he got the room, but we wish him luck!

TASK OF THE WEEK: HELP ME SET UP HALLOWEEN YARD DISPLAY

Halloween can be a nightmare if you don’t have time to take care of all the odds and ends. One enterprising Client in Atlanta enlisted TaskRabbit’s help in setting up a large Halloween display in his yard, having a Tasker haul boxes and props from his basement and assembling the spooky scene. And we’ll be on hand after the holiday to help disassemble and put the decorations back into storage.

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Treat yourself to a stress-free holiday with our help. Our Taskers can:

  • Make hand-made costumes to your specifications
  • Load up your candy bowls for the onslaught of trick-or-treaters
  • Pick up and deliver the costume you ordered from the local shop
  • Schedule your next dental appointment to address any post-holiday cavities


What can we help you with this Halloween?

TASK OF THE WEEK: DELIVER THE NEW YORK TIMES TO MY HUSBAND FOR OUR WEDDING ANNIVERSARY (1ST YEAR: PAPER)

The practice of giving a specific gift for a specific wedding anniversary is centuries old. For the 1st anniversary, you give paper, for the 25th anniversary something silver, for the 50th anniversary – gold! In this spirit, Emily decided to surprise her husband on their first anniversary by having the Sunday New York Times delivered to their porch. Tasker Gloria fought her way through the bustling streets of Brooklyn to her “one house paper route” in time for the couple to spend hours reading the paper and reminiscing about their first year of marriage. Congratulations to you and your husband, Emily!

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TASK OF THE WEEK: DELIVER SURPRISE TO A SAD BASEBALL FAN

It’s October, which means crisp air and baseball playoff season! This week’s Task of the Week features a surprise delivery to cheer up a lamenting fan whose team didn’t make the playoffs.

Client Henry turned to TaskRabbit to spread some cheer to a friend who was bummed when her baseball team got knocked out of playoff contention. Tasker Carrie came to the rescue, delivering a 3-pack of canned whipped cream to Henry’s friend Dominique when she was at work. The hardest part of the task was getting Dominique to smile and pose for pictures with the surprise gift, photos that Henry plans to unveil at her future wedding ceremony. We’re sure there’s an inside joke here somewhere, and we always love seeing the creative ways people use TaskRabbit!

How can we help you during playoff season? Let us know.

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TASK OF THE WEEK: HAND-WRITE THANK YOU CARDS (I JUST HAD A BABY!)

When you’re a new mom, you have a great appreciation for the small things: the little one’s smile, a quick nap, an instant of free time, an extra pair of hands. Shara M. recently gave birth to a baby girl and realized she needed a second pair of hands to help out with various tasks that were piling up. Reaching out to TaskRabbit, she knocked out several errands that would have otherwise taken precious time away from the baby. Tasker Diane wrote thank you cards, returned gifts for store credit, and filed paperwork for Shara, helping return her New York apartment to a manageable state. New moms take note: we can also help out with laundry, house-cleaning, deliveries and more. Still no progress on outsourcing your naps to us, though.

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TASK OF THE WEEK: SURPRISE MY BRIDE WITH A VISIT FROM OUR DOGS

Dogs are a big part of the TaskRabbit family, so we totally understand the sweetness of this task. Getting married at a hotel miles away from home, Andrew wanted to surprise his bride-to-be with a visit from their dogs. Tasker Mona frequently handles pet-sitting tasks, but this one was unique. The dogs, staying in the backyard of the bride’s parents’ house on the wedding day, were picked up and delivered to the bride for a few minutes of attention before being whisked back to the yard. The bride was incredibly happy to snuggle with her beloved four-legged friends at such an emotional time, and the dogs got to be a small part of the big day. We wonder if this task was posted under “Delivery” or “Pet-sitting.” Congratulations Andrew!

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