Elevate Your Career VOL#3: The Thank You Note

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April 29, 2024
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If you want to stand out from the crowd, few things do it better than a handwritten thank you note. They’re rare in our digital times, which makes them even more powerful. They’re the gold standard of showing appreciation, they keep you on top of the recipient’s mind, and they can help open doors to new opportunities for the future.

Occasions to write a thank-you note:

  1. After a colleague goes above and beyond the call of duty

  2. After someone volunteers their time to your cause

  3. After you’ve received a gift, whether from a wedding, shower, or birthday

  4. After you’ve attended a party or event that someone else spent a great deal of time organizing or hosting

  5. After receiving gifts or notes of well wishes during a period of illness

How to write a thank you note: 

  1. Date it in the top right hand corner.

  2. Use a salutation.

    1. Formal/Professional – Dear {title} {last_Name},

    2. Professional – Dear {first_Name} {last_Name},

    3. Close Professional/Social – Dear {first_Name},

    4. Social – Dearest {first_Name},

    5. Good friend – First name, Nickname, or Initials

  3. First sentence – Thank them explicitly for the specific gift or act for which you are writing the letter.

    1. I am so thankful/grateful for…

    2. I want to say how much I appreciated…

    3. I am writing this note to acknowledge…

    4. I want you to know how much I value…

  4. Second Sentence – Personalize the note with an original thought about the things you are thanking for, the effort or thought behind it, or what it means to you and the relationship.

  5. Third sentence (optional) – Pull the focus back and think about the future. Suggest future actions or directions or develop the thought from sentence two.

  6. Fourth sentence – repeat the thanks or offer a concluding thought.

  7. Use a closing.

    1. Formal/Professional/Social – Sincerely

    2. Professional/Social – Best regards, Regards, All the best, Best, Respectfully yours, Cordially

    3. Social/Personal – Yours truly, Warmly, Affectionately yours, With great affection, With love, etc.

Remember, a little appreciation goes a long way in building strong relationships. Write your notes as soon as possible, but don’t hesitate if you feel you’re late: A late note is always better than no note at all.

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