I recently received a pleasant surprise. A few days after leading a dining etiquette course for one of the world’s top multinational professional services networks, a handwritten thank you note arrived. It made me smile all the more because just the week prior I had received a handwritten thank you note from a senior executive who attended another one of our dining etiquette events.
In today’s electronic age, some ask if handwritten thank you notes are even necessary anymore.
They most certainly are.
Emailing one’s thanks is certainly permissible and is often done. Any expression of appreciation and gratitude – including sending an email - counts. But email thank you notes are quite ordinary.
Handwritten ones are much more special and take your display of appreciation from ordinary to extraordinary in one fell swoop of a pen. Handwritten notes show you care enough to put pen to paper and share your thoughts.
While quickly jotting off an email is easy and convenient to do, here are some tips to help you master the art of a handwritten thank you note in five minutes or less.
First, set yourself up for success by being prepared. Make sure you have a supply of stationery and stamps handy. Nothing sabotages the good intentions of a handwritten thank you note like not having the tools you need to get the task done. Remember, what you write on, as well as what you write, is a reflection of you so select appropriate stationery.
Second, be timely. Write your thank you note as soon as possible so you don’t forget. When you know you will need to thank someone, address and stamp the envelope before you head out to your lunch, meeting, interview or other event. That way all that is left to do when you return to your office is to write the actual note and mail it. That said, a late note is better than one never written.
Third, when writing the note, keep it short and sweet. Watch spelling, punctuation and grammar. Write as neatly as possible.
Handwriting your thank you notes is a wonderful habit to develop because they make you and the recipient feel good. They are a sign of being polite and well-mannered. Moreover, in business they help set you apart from others who send emails. Sounds marvelous doesn't it?
Have a marvelous week - Catherine