When was the last time that you received a handwritten thank-you note?

I’d love to see a resurgence of this practice.

In the next few weeks, I’ll be writing about fifty of these notes (maybe more) and it’s one of my favorite things to do.

With two books coming out this fall — one of which featured 20+ authors in an edited collection and the other that included 20+ people profiled and sharing their stories — I’m feeling very thankful for the community of people around me who help supported the vision for these projects.

I also make a point to write a hand-written note of thanks to every guest that comes on the “Research in Action” podcast and I’m gearing up to complete another batch of those as well.

These notes are one of the best ways I’ve found to show someone else how much I really care about their actions, support, or contribution.

And, I’ve found, an email is just not the same thing.

Here are some of my favorite tips for thank-you notes:

  1. Keep them short. We’re all busy, and brevity might mean that you’ll write more of them.
  2. Offer a personal detail. Rather than a form note, I like to include something specific that person did that I appreciated.
  3. Choose a fun card. Thank-you cards come in all kinds and even the boxed varieties offer a range of colorful options to choose from.
  4. Make it a surprise. A lot of people aren’t expecting a handwritten thank-you note, so it’s extra special when it arrives.

Handwritten thank-you notes have been a habit of mine for a long time since they are memorable for people. I’ve even had people send me thank-you emails for sending a handwritten thank-you note!

I hope you’ll think of a small list of people who might deserve some thanks so that you have an excuse to join in the fun. Because, really, is there anything better than setting aside an afternoon to write notes of thanks to people?

To think on:

  • Who do you want to offer your thanks to?
  • Are you in the habit of sending handwritten thank-you notes?