Welcome to Social Graces Saturday. Today we are going to talk about thank you notes. Now, I’m going to confess something to you. Hello. I’m Dana, and I have a stationery problem. Seriously though. I love pretty stationery. A while back I looked through all my stationery, and I have enough thank you notes to last me until the end of time. It’s a little out of control. My friends tease me because I keep a box of thank you notes in my car at all times. They think that is odd. Maybe so. However, I read that Princess Diana would write thank you notes in the car on her ride back home. She is not the only successful person to have that habit. When I read that I understood why she was very wise to do so. It was an “ah ha” moment for me. There are many times that I think about writing a thank you to someone, but if I don’t sit down and do it right then and there, I get busy and many times I don’t get it sent. I’m not talking about a gift situation, but a thank you for kind words or actions. Having the notes in my car allows me to send a note when I am waiting for an oil change or on my lunch hour. It works for me.
The big debate lately is…are texts and emails an appropriate way to send a thank you? My personal answer is, it depends. I think it depends on what the thank you is for, and who you are thanking. If I am thanking the Queen Bee or my sister, then I feel like a thank you email or even a text is just fine. I feel adequately thanked by them if they use text or email if they are thanking me for something. If I am thanking a close friend, then I too think it is ok to send a text or email as long as what you are thanking them for is having lunch with you for example. If you are thanking them for a gift then I would send either an email or a hand written note. Ok, I hear the groans already…not the dreaded hand written note!
I think a hand written note is the most elegant way to thank someone. Especially if it is someone that you do not know well or an elder. If your great grandmother sends you a gift for your birthday you should send her a hand written note. It will mean so much more to her than an email. Remember, she is from another generation who is not usually technologically savvy. She will truly know you were grateful for her gift if you take the time to actually hand write a note. Also, one of the things I treasure now are the notes or letters that I received from my grandparents, as it is a record of their handwriting. I know. I’m sentimental. Also, I don’t know about you, but all I get through snail mail anymore is junk mail and bills. I am really pleased when I receive a hand written note. It’s becoming a lost art.
Having said that, once, after meeting vendors at market, when I arrived back in the office, I sent each of them an email from the address listed on their business cards. My emails just said I was glad to have met them, and thank you for sharing their time and expertise with us. I found out later that they had spoken with each other about the emails because they were so impressed that I took the time to send them a thank you email. No client had EVER done that before. Good manners make an impression. There is just no doubt about it.
I think in today’s world, just taking the time to send a thank you, no matter if it is an email or handwritten makes an impression. I still think the most elegant way to thank someone is with a beautifully handwritten note. However, we are in a technology driven world and I think that just taking the time to thank someone is the important thing. So, until next time…stay thankful, stay grateful, and above all…stay glamorous.