Thank-you notes… don’t you just love them?! I know, I know thank you notes went out with kid gloves and bouffant hairdos. You can stop the eye rolls because if you think that, you are wrong. Writing thank-you notes is a skill worth learning. If they don’t teach it in business schools, they should. So I’m going to give you some tips for writing thank you notes!
The sweetest words uttered by my youngest, came to me over the phone last month. “Mom, thank-you for making me write thank you notes. I just wrote a client and thanked her for hosting me for dinner. It felt fantastic. And especially when she mentioned how nice it was in an email to me later.” This daughter works in the big apple in the profession she went to school to learn, so she knows a little something about her business. It’s not just me who appreciates the importance of thank you notes – even though I’m the one who jammed that importance into her head in the first place.
Give me one example where you can set yourself up in business transactions that subtly puts you head and shoulders above the rest. And at the same time announcing as quietly as a well-trained butler, your good manners, and charm. A well-crafted hand written thank-you note is money, honey, in the bank. Clients remember them and more importantly you for writing them. Those same clients most assuredly take note and remark to others. Think about it. How many times do you get a handwritten anything theses days? Don’t you get the tiniest bit excited when you open up your mailbox and spy something besides junk mail and bills? Wouldn’t you like to deliver that little thrill to that special client?
Okay. Now that I’ve got your attention, on to the tips for writing thank you notes. To capitalize on the tiny thrill of opening the mailbox and finding your note, you need to deliver something noteworthy.
What To Do
If you are going to go to the trouble, make it worth the effort, give it some punch, enlist your creative writer and keep it short. Oh, by the way, hip personalized stationary launches the note into the stratosphere and well out of the ballpark compared to one on an email.
What NOT To Do
Filling in the blanks is worse than no note, i.e. Thank you for the_________. It was _________ . “Blah blah blah” is a decided no-no.
Thanking someone for dinner:
Dinner last night was excellent! You were right. It is amazing what good wine can do for a meal. Thank you so much for the suggestion. I am filing that red in my long-term memory.
It was great seeing you. Let’s get together again soon.
Here’s a way to make points with a new client without coming across as ingratiating:
Thanks for taking the time to meet with me today. I’ll get back to soon with the answers, prices, costs you asked about. How about next over a drink or dinner?
Thank-you notes are also an excellent way to advance a romantic relationship. Who wouldn’t want to get a little note thanking them for the great time they spent with you, or how lovely it was to meet you? If someone takes the time, makes the effort, or spends the money to give you a gift, sad as it is, a thank you note by its sheer rarity makes it all worth while. Not to mention it makes you the writer, feel fantastic.
Learning to write thank-you notes is well worth the time and tiny bit of effort it takes. Try it. And thank you!