We don't do Secret Santa at work anymore. Not because there were problems -- there weren't -- but because interest in it just petered out. December is crazy busy, deadlines are shorter than usual, and we didn't want to take the time away from working.
When we did do it, though, it always worked out well. We had a $10 limit, which was just that -- a limit. An upper one. And we did wish lists. We filled out our own slips for the drawing, and there was a designated space to write what we'd like. We usually gave folks lots of options: "Anything Disney." "Anything chocolate." "Amazon, iTunes or Target gift cards." "Art supplies."
None of us paid any attention to what our Santa spent, unless we got a gift card, and that's because we need to know the amount so we can plan on how to spend it! I wouldn't have blinked at a $5 gift card instead of a $10 one -- maybe that's all my Santa could afford -- but in practice, those who couldn't afford to spend $10 didn't give gift cards. They'd make something, or buy something cheaper that obviously had thought put into it -- e.g., a dollar store Mickey Mouse mug for the Disney fan.
Bottom line: I just can't see getting bent out of shape over the quality or (perceived) price of any gift, but especially one from a co-worker who drew my name at random. It's not going to ruin my Christmas if I get a cheap gift from my Secret Santa but Susie gets a cool one from hers.
Now, if Santa forgets to bring me that Red Ryder BB gun, we need to talk.