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What we've discussed so far assumes that a gift is an object or service that one purchases or makes and gives to another. But, in an organizational context, a gift might be mentorship, an unexpected promotion, or acceptance of another person's opinion.
Consider meetings where opinions fall into two clear camps. And, out of blue, someone who previously opposed your position or stayed neutral now moves to support you. That person smiles at you, and says, "I think you've put your finger on real issue here." Seems like a gift, doesn't it?
Or consider this one, "Jane, you've worked a lot of hours lately to make this presentation a big success. We appreciate what you've done, and want you to take rest of week off. Don't worry about your to-do list; we'll take care of everything." Another type of gift.
In mass media, reporters and editors normally cannot accept gifts, or gifts beyond a threshhold value. It's a way of avoiding relationship obligations that might influence their coverage of events, people, and organizations. In this case we see rejection of gifts as a way of avoiding relationships.
In summary, look at exchanges of gifts as potentially more than just an exchange between individuals; think of them as a strategic tools for developing and managing business relationships. That makes giving a strategic form of communication.
Robert F. Abbott writes and publishes Abbott's Communication Letter. Learn how you can use communication to help achieve your goals, by reading articles or subscribing to this ad-supported newsletter. An excellent resource for leaders and managers, at: http://www.communication-newsletter.com