Monday, November 5, 2012

It's the little things: the importance of Thank You Notes

"Thank you."

Saying thank you seems simple enough, right? Two words. Eight letters. Not too difficult, really.

However, you'd be surprised how often writing a thank you note is overlooked...which is a shame, because it is so important. 

A hand-written thank you note goes a long way. Think about it- how great does it make you feel when you invite someone to a lunch date or give them a ride to work and then receive a heartfelt thank you afterwards? It feels fantastic- and you're much more likely to remember them as a thoughtful and respectful individual. 

That's why we cannot emphasize enough how important it is to have a stack of blank note cards on hand so that you can whip up a thank you note when necessary. Customized thank you notes are even better (and reasonably priced if you purchase them in bulk!); they really help to keep your company's name fresh in the mind of the recipient.

When should you write up a thank you note? Some perfect opportunities include:

- After an initial meeting. Thanking someone for taking the time out of their day to meet with you is a necessity.
- After inviting you as a plus one to an event. 
- Following up after a networking event and thanking them for chatting with you. While networking is a foot in the door, the follow-up thank you note is an invite back for after dinner drinks. 
- If they have volunteered for your event. Whether they worked the registration table or acted as a speaker, they still need to be thanked accordingly for willingly offering you a chunk of their free time.
- If they take the time to read your resume or have just interviewed you. Want the job? Hope you wrote a thank you note.
- If they recently delivered cupcakes or a delicious Gobbler from Mary's Kitchen Port to your office (Hey, a girl can dream!).

One more thing to note is the extreme importance of hand writing your thank you note. Make it personal! Mention why you're thanking them and why it meant enough to you for you to write a note. Let them know you're looking forward to seeing them again. Nothing says "I'm just doing this because I feel like I need to" like a typed note or one that reads: 

To whom it may concern,

Thank you for interviewing me. Have a nice week.

(Insert your name here)

Essentially, make sure to thank people. You know how it makes you feel when you receive a thank you (and if you're like me, you even save all of your thank you notes in a box), so why not make someone else's day...and make sure that you stay fresh in their mind.

It really is the little things that matter most.

Thank you,

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