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Gift Giving Case Studies Essay

Gift Giving, A Digraph Analysis

The art of gift giving is a long-standing and ancient act of human behavior. Globally, people appreciate occasions and important dates and people with this act. Gift giving has a direct impact on consumer behavior in organizations. The article delves into this act with special interest in the impact of gift giving in consumer behavior.

Researchers find that there is a process, which is universally followed when people exchange gifts. They conduct a study, which concludes that there exists a roadmap for receipt and reciprocation of gift giving. However, I digress from this study’s conclusions because of a number of misgivings.

First, when people exchange gifts I think there is a reason behind it. Reasons may vary from societal expectations, individual expectations, and personal attempt to gain a favor or appreciation. Whichever the motive, the primary person that is affected is the giver of the gift. Rarely would it affect the receiver to act in a particular way as the study suggests (Belk, 165).

The study finds that both the receiver and giver of a gift are overwhelmed by emotions. These emotions may range from tension to self-evaluation. This is true. However, it is also true that a gift maybe an expression of an emotion. For example, people in love express it through gift giving.

Additionally, it is not logical to conclude that there is some science behind gift selection and giving. In most cases, individuals make impulse purchases as certain items remind them about certain events, people, or family members whom they care. Hence, the relationship between consumer behavior and gift giving does not come out clearly (Belk, 159).

Gift Giving-Anthropological Perspective

Little research has been directed towards understanding the process of giving gifts. Social scientists have not satisfactorily explained this concept. Additionally, social scientists have not cut a clear line to distinguish other facets of consumer behavior from gift giving.

The paper presents different dimensions of gift giving ranging from personal dimensions to economic dimension. Additionally, the authors present different typologies of gifts. These include donations, gifts, and awards. The paper also comes up with a model that defines gift giving that includes gestation, presentation, and reformulation (Sherry, 160).

It is crucial to note that there is no a universal way of describing the art of giving gifts. The model presented is because of a theory that the authors come up with in the paper. Gift giving is a spontaneous act that is sometimes defined by dates, for example, when a couple gives anniversary gifts. The author does not clearly bring out the consumer behavior aspect of this act. It is also crucial to note that there is virtually no any relationship between gift giving and other consumer behavior theories (Sherry, 159).

Another shortcoming of this study is the failure to bring out the relevance of studying gift giving adequately. What is the impact on organizations? How does studying this affect policy decisions in an organization? Factually, when individuals receive gifts they form lasting bonds with the giver.

If that giver is an ‘organization’, the impact is duly reduced. However, if a CEO presents the gift at a personal capacity, the impact may be tremendous. Hence, gift giving and human relationships aspect should have been the gist of this study not the theory behind the act of gift giving (Sherry, 165).

Works Cited

Belk, Russel W. “It’s the Thought that Counts: A Signed Digraph Analysis of Gift Giving”. Journal of Consumer Research. 3.3 (1976): 155-162. Web.

Sherry, John F. “Gift Giving in Anthropological Perspective”. Journal of Consumer Research. 10.2 (1983): 157-168. Web.

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Rose, Jaxen. "Gift Giving Case Studies." IvyPanda, 18 Dec. 2018,

1. Jaxen Rose. "Gift Giving Case Studies." IvyPanda (blog), December 18, 2018.


Rose, Jaxen. "Gift Giving Case Studies." IvyPanda (blog), December 18, 2018.


Rose, Jaxen. 2018. "Gift Giving Case Studies." IvyPanda (blog), December 18, 2018.


Rose, J. (2018) 'Gift Giving Case Studies'. IvyPanda, 18 December.

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