Simple gestures of gratitude can go a long way in personal and professional relationships. However, our fast-paced lives have caused the art of handwritten thank you notes to go by the wayside. Because they are less commonplace, hand-written notes or even thoughtful thank you emails leave a lasting impression on the recipients. So, if you can learn how to write a thank you note, you may find yourself landing promotions and building lasting relationships with your loved ones.
When Should I Write A Thank You Note?
If you’ve never written a thank you note, you may not know what occasions call for them. However, many events call for a handwritten thank you note or heartfelt thank you email.
Some common reasons to write a thank you note include:
- Whenever someone gives you a gift
- After you go to a job interview
- If someone hosts you for a meal or social gathering
- When someone goes out of their way to help you
- After someone has provided guidance or mentorship
If possible, you should write and send your thank you notes as soon as possible after the event. The exact timing depends on the occasion, but the sooner you send them, the better the impression will be.
How to Write a Handwritten Thank You Note
Step 1: Gather Supplies
You must first gather the necessary supplies to create a memorable hand-written thank you note. You’ll need stationery or notecards, a pen, and envelopes for the notes. If you are mailing the cards, you will also need the physical address of all your recipients.
Step 2: Address the Recipient
Once you have gathered the necessary supplies, begin your note by addressing the recipient with a salutation. Use their name or a suitable title, such as “Dear [Name]” or “Dear Dr. [Last Name].” The exact way you address the recipient depends on whether you are writing to a personal connection or a professional one.
Step 3: Express Gratitude
After you address the recipient, write an opening paragraph for your thank you note. In this paragraph, express your sincere gratitude for the gift, favor, or act of kindness. Mention the exact gift or favor the recipient gave you, and be specific about your appreciation and why it meant so much to you.
Step 4: Share Your Thoughts
In the next paragraph, share your thoughts and feelings about the gift, gesture, or experience. Highlight how it has impacted you and why it’s significant. Anything you can share that personalizes the card will make a difference and increase its impact.
Step 5: Wrap It Up
In the closing paragraph, reiterate your gratitude and express your desire to keep in touch or meet again. Offer a warm closing, such as “Warmest regards” or “With heartfelt thanks,” followed by your name.
Step 6: Send It Promptly
Remember to send your hand-written thank you note promptly. Aim to ship it within a week of receiving the gift or act of kindness to show your appreciation promptly.
How to Write a Thank You Email
Step 1: Compose a Subject Line
Thank you emails are a bit different than handwritten thank you cards. You don’t need supplies to start (except for a laptop or smartphone). However, you do need to craft a concise and meaningful subject line that captures the essence of your gratitude. For example, “Thank You for [Reason for Email].”
Step 2: Open with a Greeting
Begin your email with a polite and professional greeting, just like you would a thank you card or letter. Some greetings that may work include “Dear [Name]” or “Good Morning [Name].” Like handwritten notes, your greeting in the thank you email should match your relationship with the recipient.
Step 3: Express Gratitude
Once you write the subject line and greeting, start your email by expressing your sincere appreciation. Be specific about what you’re grateful for and how it has positively impacted you.
If you are writing a thank you email as a follow-up for a job interview, use the opening paragraph to express your gratitude for the interview and share something beneficial that came out of it, like something you learned about the company. This is just another step in proper job interview etiquette.
Step 4: Share Additional Thoughts
After you start the email, expand on your gratitude in the next paragraph. Share your thoughts and feelings about the gesture, gift, or assistance you received. Be genuine and heartfelt in your message.
Depending on the circumstance, this can also be a place to share additional thoughts about the situation. For example, you can use it to highlight your worth for potential employers in the case of an interview thank you. Or, if it’s a thank you for a dinner you were invited to, you can use it as a chance to extend the olive branch for another dinner you can host.
Step 5: Reiterate Your Thanks
Conclude your email by reiterating your gratitude and offering a warm closing, such as “Best regards” or “Thankfully,” followed by your name.
Step 6: Proofread and Send
Before sending your thank you email, proofread it for typos or errors. Double-check the recipient’s email address, then click “Send” to deliver your message promptly.
Start Sending Thank You Notes
Mastering the art of writing thank you notes, whether hand-written or via email, allows us to express gratitude meaningfully. The personal touch and effort put into crafting these notes leave a lasting impact on the recipient, fostering strong relationships and spreading positivity. So, seize the opportunity to express your appreciation and brighten someone’s day with a heartfelt thank you note today. And, while you’re at it, learn what social etiquette mistakes to avoid to maintain relationships.
Image credit: Pexels
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