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Christmas Shopping in Style – Essenwood Consulting

Christmas Shopping in Style

Some of us like to get our Christmas shopping started early and feel relieved when it’s all done before December, while others can’t get motivated until the time pressure of Advent kicks in.

And your personality also influences how you approach Christmas shopping once you have started.

What can we predict about Christmas shopping behaviour for each personality style?  And what might be the potential conflicts with our shopping companions?


Mobilisers like to get an achievable result and they tend to make quick decisions.  When they have a task to achieve, they go straight for it, in a determined way.  This style comes out when they do their Christmas shopping.

They are likely to know what they want to buy and go straight to the relevant shops (or websites), find what they want and make their purchases quickly.  They are unlikely to spend time browsing – which can be a problem if their shopping companion likes to browse.  If they can’t get exactly what they want, they may buy something else, as long as it is “good enough”.  They will move quickly from one shop to another and may look like they are in a hurry.  They may feel stressed if they get home without having bought all the presents they intended.

If you are shopping with a Mobiliser, be prepared to move directly from one shop to the next, without diversions, and expect them to show some impatience if you spend too much time deciding what to buy.


Navigators like to get a desired result and they tend to make thought-through decisions.  When they have a task to achieve, they like to work out a course of action, in a focused way.

They are likely to think through in advance what presents they want to buy, where to buy them and the best route from place to place.  They are likely to stick to their plan and unlikely to be distracted by things they notice as they go along.  If they can’t complete their plan, they will reflect and adjust it.  They will move deliberately from place to place and may look calm and methodical.  They may feel stressed if they are shopping with someone who wants to go off in different directions or throws in new ideas at the last minute.

If you are shopping with a Navigator, be prepared to stick to their plan and if you want to do something else, take the time to tell them and agree a new course of action, so they know what’s happening.


Synthesisers like to get the best result possible and they tend to make consultative decisions.  When they have a task to achieve, they like to consult others and obtain all the relevant information and they appear approachable.

They are likely to think carefully about who they are buying for and they may consult others for ideas.  When they shop, they tend to look at a lot of options before making their purchases, to ensure they get the “best result”.  They may appear to browse, taking in all the information, changing direction if they notice something interesting, and touching items to see it they meet their criteria.  They may feel stressed if they run out of time or can’t find exactly what they want to give.

If you are shopping with a Synthesiser, be prepared to meander with them from place to place and be patient when they take time to decide whether or not to buy a particular item.


Energisers like to get an embraced result and tend to make collaborative decisions.  When they have a task to achieve, they like to involve other people, in an engaging way.

They are likely to talk to other people about what they are going to buy for their family and friends and they may enjoy shopping with others.  They may take opportunities to engage with others, talking to shop assistants or to other people in the queue.  They tend to be open to new ideas and may go off at tangents when they spot other possible presents for people.  They may appear animated and will move quite quickly from place to place, though not in a direct way.  They may feel stressed if they haven’t been able to interact with others or if others have been negative.

If you are shopping with an Energiser, be prepared for changes of direction and unplanned events, and be ready to chat to them as they shop.

Of course there are lots of other influences on how you do your Christmas shopping – personality does not explain everything!  But knowing your style and being able to “shop in your style” enables you to fulfill your needs and avoid your stressors.  Merry Christmas!

You can read an overview of the four styles on this page.

Spread the word!