Sunday, May 23, 2010

Mamas Teach Your Children to Write Thank You Notes

I find that society has become more and more dependent on computers and that the art of saying thank you in the form of a real paper card or note is fading away.   But I think sending a real paper card is one of the nicest little tokens of appreciation you can give someone these days. I know when I open my mailbox, I'm excited when I find something personal, like a card.   I smile and I usually keep that card to remind me of that person especially if it was a genuine heartfelt personal card.

This is the time of year we usually receive a lot of thank you cards from such occasions and events like graduations, showers, weddings, etc.  I think one of best things we can teach our children is the importance of writing thank you cards and the proper way to write thank you cards.

The key is very simple – you really have to mean it when you say thank you!  People get it when you genuinely mean something and also when you are just going through the motions.

The most beautiful thing about truly thanking someone is that it creates a deeper and instant bond between people.
In 1922 Emily Post wrote, "In writing notes or letters, as in all other forms of social observance, the highest achievement is in giving the appearance of simplicity, naturalness and force."

Keep it Short - Only one or two sentences at the most. Anymore than that and you are running the risk that it will not be read at all.

Post It - Always use the traditional mailing method for your thank you notes. There is more of a chance that they will remember your note if it is delivered in an envelope, more so than they would if it is just another email on a long list of emails.

Time it Right – Write and mail your thank you notes immediately or as soon after the event or receipt of the gift as possible.   Sending notes weeks and months after the occasion or event loses sincerity.

Be specific about what you are thanking people for.  Sometimes it means even more when people know what they are being thanked for e.g. ‘Thanks so much John for the book on resume writing.  I will certainly put it to good use.’  Or 'Thank you so much for the coffee pot with the timer.  You know how we LOVE our coffee.'  It makes the whole exchange richer and more meaningful than just a casual generic “thanks."

“Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow” – Melody Beattie

Smile - Smile while you are writing the note because it will put a positive slant on your words and your happiness and enthusiasm will be conveyed to the reader.

Such a small gesture of appreciation and gratitude should be a habit in everyone's personal and business life.  

You may also reference the Seven Rules for Sending Greeting Cards  for more information on sending thank you notes and other greeting cards.

In Appreciation,
"Helping You and Your Business Look Good"


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