Thank yous with an edge

Thank You Card

Never Underestimate The Power Of A Handwritten Thank You Note!

This small gesture, done well, will almost certainly provide the sender with a competitive edge. Why? I think it is because these simple moments of communication are viewed as personal, genuine, and handcrafted. They can be saved, reread, and shared. Top it off with the fact that it still feels good to get an envelope in the mail that isn’t a bill and doesn’t require a response.  

For my five tips and a "bonus edge" read on. . .

1. Be timely. Try to send the card within twenty-four hours of the meeting or activity that caused you to write it.

2. Be specific. It’s nice to have someone say “thank you,” but it means much more when the sender includes a specific reference to a noteworthy portion of the conversation that was held or to the gesture that they are really appreciative of. It should be something that you believe both parties will remember clearly.

3. Be neat. It defeats the entire purpose if the note is written so fast that it is hard or impossible to read. Take your time. When you hurry you only save a couple minutes.

4. Be certain. More than anything else make sure that you have the recipient’s name correct. Over the years I have received several well intentioned thank you notes that have started out with “Dear Ron” or “Dear Rob.” My name is Rod. And instead of delighting me you found a way to disappoint me.

5. Be selfless. The thank you note is not the time or place to ask for more help. Be appreciative for what you received. Make your next request separate and apart from saying thank you.

And now for that very special bonus edge. . .

Every time you send a thank you note to someone who was willing to meet with you or help you, SEND TWO. That’s right. Send one to the person you met with and send another to the person who made it possible. That could be the assistant, the secretary, the receptionist, or the person in your social network who arranged for an initial introduction. There’s always someone, and your second card will be received by someone who seldom ever gets them.

See the edge? No need to send me a card!

Add A New Comment

  • Kate
    Feb. 13, 2012 provides an online service for help getting those notes and cards in the mail. Especially useful if you travel much of the time or have poor handwritting.

The Fine Print

Rod Brooks (that's me) is VP & CMO of PEMCO Mutual Insurance Company and serves as Immediate Past Chair of the Board of Directors for the Word of Mouth Marketing Association (WOMMA).  It's important to disclose both of those relationships and to be clear that this is my personal blog where I share thoughts and opinions that are solely my own.  Contact me!

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