The Art of Gift Giving – Part 2 of 5 – The Gift Model

To apply the suggested gift framework [Message, Delivery, Timing] effectively, you should identify the relationship type and status between you and the gifted. Below is a spectrum of relationship types that you could use to “title” your relationship with the gifted:

We’ve also developed a simple scale at which the relationship’s progress maybe identified:

Now, by using the Gift Criteria Matrix below, you’ll be able to determine the gift’s budget in terms of dollar value. It will also help shape the way you allocate the budget based on the gift’s purpose relative to the relationship and it’s priorities. This will become much simpler  once you go through the Matrix and the Steps below:

 Fig.1a Gift Criteria Matrix for Social Relationships

 Fig.1b Gift Criteria Matrix for Professional Relationships

In order to use the matrix above, you should take the following steps:

  1. Step One: Draw a line between the Relationship Type & the Relationship Status
  2. Step Two: Project the Line across the Gift Criteria Scales & Mark the Intercepts
  3. Step Three: Calculate the sum of the Criteria’s Percentage Weights (Intercepts)

The First outcome of the three steps above is a total weight percentage. If you multiply this percentage by your monthly disposable income, you’ll have the gift’s budget.

The Second outcome of the steps above is a sloped line that indicates the gift’s priorities. If it’s upward sloping then you should prioritize the gift’s timing & delivery over it’s message. If it’s downward sloping, then you should prioritize the gift’s message over it’s delivery & timing.

The Third outcome of the steps above is the budget allocation for each of the gift’s criteria.

The following example illustrates how this madness works. But, before we get to the example, note that you should be able to identify the following key characteristics of the gifted prior to your pursuit of designing the gift:

1. Age         2. Gender        3. Profession       4. Hobby         5.Aspiration

Now to the example:

Assume that you have been seeing a special someone for the past three months,  her/his birthday is coming up in October, and you’re Monthly Disposable Income is 5,000 AED (1,360 USD). The relationship type is intimate at the lower side of the scale due to it’s recency. The relationship status is in it’s buildup phase at the lower side of the scale, again, due to it’s recency.

Now applying steps 1, 2, 3 using the matrix above to design your gift:

The followings are the intercepts:

  • The Message intercept is 12%
  • The Delivery intercept is 8%
  • The Timing intercept is 5%

Therefore, the three outcomes are as follows

The gift budget is [12%+8%+5%] X 5,000  = 1,250 AED [340 USD]

The gift’s message is more important than it’s delivery & timing

And half the gift’s budget should be allocated for the gift’s message; a third of the budget should be allocated for it’s delivery, and only a fifth should be allocated for the gift’s timing.

Just a quick reminder, by “message” we’re reffering to the concept of the gift. The “message” maybe thought of as the physical item that remains at the disposal of the gifted. The “delivery” is typically the packaging of that physical item and how it’s “delivered” to the gifted. The “timing” maybe thought of as the surrounding enviroment during the gift’s delivery. The first part of this article could help explain these criteria better.

Now we all know that you’re an awesome giftor who knows the key characteristics of the lucky person in the example above, and you’ve managed to scope up the poor person like cops do with their suspects, as follows:

  • Age: 27 Years Old
  • Gender: Female
  • Profession: Interior Designer
  • Hobby: Pilates
  • Aspiration: Reputed for creativity

Here’s one gift that aligns the gift’s framework & model with the gifted’s key characteristics:

An engraved Pilates Springboard wrapped in pain white paper and an earthy organic fabric. The engraving is of an inside joke between the gifted and the giftor, without any undersigning. The gift should be delivered to gifted at her residence during a quiet afternoon before her birthday evening.The Giftor’s identity should not be confirmed to the gifted just yet. This allows anticipation. Ideally you should disclose yourself as the giftor within a couple of hours, once you’re sure that the gift has been collected and opened. The disclosure should typically be in person by means of a playful comment about her …pilates lol

Although we came up with this gift on the go while we’re typing out this part of this article, we still evaluate such a gift as 20 out of 24 points according to the following scores of the gift’s criteria:

  1. The Message [Score 10/12]
  2. The Delivery  [Score 6/8]
  • Packaging – Simple, Organic, contextual  [Score 3/3]
  • Ceremony – Personal, Non-Celebratory [Score 3/3]
  • Commissioning – Will be exposed instantly to the convenience test [Score 1/2]

3. The Timing [ Score 4/5]

  • Memorability – Anticipated, usable [Score 2/2]
  • Synchronicity – During an appropriate time & setting [Score 2/3]

But remember, in the example above, we’re assuming that neither you nor the gifted is using the “gift” as a medium of barter for services. But if that was the case, then you’d need to use the title “gift” strictly as a social mask to such a transaction. Part 3 of this article discusses different ways that allow you to “magnify” your end of the bargain in order to maximize your benefit; ensuring that you’re the “Impressive Gold Digger” rather than the bird lol.

Stay Tuned For Part 3…