Growing up I was taught to send thank you cards to those who were kind enough to give me a gift for special occasions such as a birthday, communion, graduation etc. or performed an act of kindness that my parents felt warranted a thank you note. While I didn’t look forward to this ritual I did learn the importance and meaning behind it and as a result, it has helped me both personally and professionally.
Sending a thank you doesn’t just apply to gift givers but also includes acts of professional kindness such as a client referral, a business introduction, or an interview. Taking a few minutes out of your day to craft a nice thank you note will most definitely set you apart.
I’ve recently become surprised at how many people no longer think it necessary to send a thank you note; for anything! I cannot determine if it’s because of the perceived “casualness” of today’s society and people view thank you notes as a more “formal” task or is it that people just don’t know any better?
If you believe that a thank you note / email / phone call is “old school” and not necessary in today’s world, here are 5 (I think) great reasons to counter that argument. After reading, let me know if I’ve changed your mind!
1. It eliminates the guesswork – a gesture, whether it’s sending a gift or maybe a client referral, business contact etc. should be acknowledged because it enables the giver/sender to know that it was received. How often have you wondered whether your gift was received? Or if that a client referral or connection worked out for the receiver? With technology at our fingertips at all times, a simple thank you takes only a few minutes to craft and send.
2. It builds rapport and establishes long-term relationships – taking a few minutes out of your schedule to acknowledge a kind act helps to build rapport and trust in both personal and professional relationships. People want to do business (or develop relationships) with people they like.
3. It shows respect – thanking someone shows that you have respect for that person and their time. If someone takes the time out of their schedule to do something nice for you, why wouldn’t you show respect to that person and acknowledge their kindness?
4. It demonstrates good manners – think about how you feel when someone doesn’t say please or thank you to you. It’s not a nice feeling right? Why? Because as early back as you can remember, your parents instilled the importance of manners so when it’s not returned to you, it’s disappointing.
5. It shows gratitude – at times I feel there is a strong sense of entitlement amongst people today and I often wonder if this is why showing gratitude is a foreign concept for some. Recently, a friend sent me a client referral and I was grateful that she took time out to not only recommend me but she called to give me a little background on this individual so that I was prepared for the conversation. I was truly grateful and sent her a handwritten thank you note. Once received, she called to tell me that she cannot remember the last time she received a note like mine and it made her day.
So did I change your mind? Will you be sending more thank you notes when appropriate?
Thanks for taking time to read this blog article