With Christmas only 50 days away here something to keep in mind, a recent report by the Journal of Consumer Psychology found something that will save gift-givers a lot of money and time this upcoming holiday season.
They found that close friends and family are more likely to dislike a gift when it’s wrapped just perfect, In the experiment, each participant was given a gift that was wrapped either neatly or sloppily.
After everyone opened their gifts, they were then asked to rank how they felt about the gift. The results showed that people who said they’d received poorly wrapped gifts and opened up a great gift inside (a mug with their favorite sports team logo) recorded that they felt “pleasantly surprised,” while those who had nicely wrapped gifts with a gift they didn’t care much about (a mug with a different sports team logo) recorded feeling that it missed their expectations.
This is supportive of what the study calls the disconfirmation theory, where people’s expectations of something like a present can impact their satisfaction after finding out what the gift actually is. For family and friends, great wrapping is more likely to let them down when they open the present.
On the other hand, the research found that acquaintances — people like coworkers or neighbors — do actually judge the gift by its wrapping. So this holiday season, Put the kids to work wrapping presents for Grandma & Grandpa and the rest of the family, and then you can focus on wrapping your co-worker’s gifts perfectly so they don’t judge you