Sometimes it’s better NOT to give a gift, researcher says

Morgan Ward—an Assistant Professor of Marketing at Emory’s Goizueta Business School in Atlanta—has done extensive research on how people give and receive gifts.

Ward tells WSB Radio’s Scott Slade that a resounding theme she has found in her research is it is sometimes better NOT to give a gift.

>>LISTEN TO SCOTT SLADE’S FULL INTERVIEW WITH WARD BELOW.

A few of Ward’s points include:

  • The wrong gift choice can do damage to your relationship with the recipient, but how do you know?
  • There's a difference between giving gifts in "normal" situations, when it's expected (i.e. the holidays and birthdays) and when the gift giving is spontaneous. In normal situations, getting something is better than getting nothing. But when it's spontaneous, a bad gift can have a real negative impact.
  • Consider the resources of the gift-giver and how that might constrain the size of the gift. You might lay a foundation if that’s an issue for you this year.

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