Using a thank you in business is more than just those two words.
From the time I was in seventh grade until I graduated Glendale High, every summer I toured with my church's youth choir.
To make it financially feasible, we stayed in host families' homes for the night before we went off to our next destination.
On my first trip, about to find out whether I'd hit the jackpot with the hosts who had a pool, or gone bust and have to share a pullout couch with someone, I stepped off the bus.
Our youth minister pulled me aside, "Did you pick up your host gift yet?" I sheepishly answered, "No."
He replied, "That's OK, you're new. Here it is - a wrapped set of note cards and here is a card and envelope. Fill out the card and thank them for hosting you tonight. Add one specific thing about their house, their hospitality or even a good breakfast. You can either give it to them when you leave their house or leave it on the bed but don't forget to do it."
I asked, "Do they really care about a note card?" He laughed and said, "No, they don't. But everyone wants to be noticed and appreciated when they have done something you benefited by."
That youth minister knew the power of making the effort to show gratitude and say thanks. He even gave me the word for thanking customers or customer appreciation: for.
When you thank customers, employees or vendors, you have to specify what it is you are thanking them for doing.
Here's a partial list of who to thank to get you started:
Your best loyal customer who just makes your day, who appreciates you and your style of doing business. Show them some sincere appreciation for their continued patronage.
Your best supplier. Sure you notice when they go out of their way but what about a handwritten note to acknowledge the job they do for you day in and day out?
Your UPS, FedEx, or other delivery truck drivers and workers for their efforts.
Your employees for the job they do and the customer experience they create with a letter sent to their home, rather than in passing.
Your Association for the specific educational opportunities their conventions bring you.
Your partner, family, and children in gratitude for their understanding.
You get the idea...
"Thankfulness is the beginning of gratitude. Gratitude is the completion of thankfulness. Thankfulness may consist merely in words. Gratitude is shown in acts." - Henri Frederic Amiel
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