The Gift of a Personal Note

I remember the time when us new internet pioneers got a little thrill when we heard the AOL voice chime, “You’ve got mail!” as we logged in. It didn’t take long for us to quickly label the postal service “snail mail” as we reveled in the convenient holiday e-card rather than an actual card we either kept as sentimental hoarders or trashed after sitting on some random table for a few days/weeks/months. Why waste a stamp when you could send a thoughtful email or e-card? What was the point of hassling with thank you cards when you can send one en masse with a click of the button? 

Now, my generation remarks on how we delight in receiving handwritten cards in the mail, a treasure among the piles of advertisements, credit card offers, and bills. “Didn’t take long for us to prefer mail over email again,” I have heard more than one person remark as they share their frustration in being buried in a barrage of emails with no end in sight. 

It’s true. That same zing I felt when I see that new email icon is now felt when I sift through the pile of soon-to-be-recycled waste and I come across a square-shaped envelope that unmistakably holds a handwritten card.

The handwritten addressed envelope, the design on the front, the weight of the paper, and the personal note inside do not go unnoticed. We are worthy of a 55 cent stamp! We made enough of an impact on that person that they took time out of their busy day to pen this note. And, whether a little or a lot, we feel gratitude for the gesture! 

Now, obviously some people are more sentimental than others. You yourself may or may not think about all of these little details when you receive a note in the mail. However, many people do, and it’s an amazing way to stand out to those you interact with without costing an arm, a leg, or even much time.

As a business professional, owner, entrepreneur, there are so many moving parts of your work, so many pieces to your day. Ultimately, we are here working hard to grow our businesses and provide what we can best offer to the clients, patients, and the customers we have. 

We should want the people within our business sphere to feel remembered, listened to, appreciated, and worth our time. And a thank you card, a personal note is the key to making them feel this way.

How often do you send a thank you card or a personal note? Every time you get together? When receiving a referral? When a celebratory moment for them comes up?

Do you ever send personal notes to those you haven’t yet met, hoping to make an impact even before meeting them? 

Is it too late to send a card if you don’t get it out within a couple days after the interaction or event? 

When do you send out personal cards, and why do you do so?

A line of personal notes to individuals who were recognized as top entrepreneurs in Portland, OR

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