In a recent conversation with a friend, we started talking about how the notion of sending a thank you card is almost extinct or only a small subset of people send thank yous nowadays (excusing wedding thank yous, though those are starting to feel a little impersonal too.) So why am I telling you this? Because even though we live in a fast-paced technologically-connected world, the thought and gesture of a thank you is still strong.
“I drew you a cupcake.” That’s the message I got from my co-worker’s 8-year-old daughter last winter. My co-worker had provided some coverage for me at work while I went on the trip of a lifetime and witnessed the Canadian Mens’ Hockey Team win a gold medal in the 2010Winter Olympics so I brought back some treats for her kids while I was away. As a thank you, her daughter mailed me a drawing she made of a cupcake. She drew me a cupcake, big deal, right? It was a big deal. This little girl had paid enough attention to her mom’s work stories to know that I liked (okay fine, maybe more than like) cupcakes and drew me a picture of one as a thank you for the presents from the Olympics. I was touched.
A few weeks ago, I was sitting on the couch when I got a phone call from a Philadelphia phone number. Being the curious person I am, I picked up and “met” my friend’s fiance over the phone. (My college friend, Prem, had proposed to his girlfriend, Manisha, the weekend before in an elaborate Bollywood-style Flash Mob with their friends and family at the Palazzo in Las Vegas. The weekend before the proposal he was visiting me and told me about his idea. While I thought his idea was great, I was a little skeptical. You see, Prem and I were on several dance teams together through college, and while he was a great dancer and often the male lead, he didn’t really choreograph. I, on the other hand, helped choreograph a few times and seeing as this was going to be one of the biggest dances of his life, I offered to help him with the flash mob proposal and choreographed a few moves for him by the end of the weekend. But back to the phone call…) I sat there slightly bewildered and wondering why she, someone who I knew of only by name but had never met, was calling me as she started explaining herself. She got my number from my friend and was so touched that I had helped out with the proposal by choreographing part of the dance that she wanted to call me and thank me herself. I was floored: it’s not every day you ask for a “stranger’s” phone number and call them, yet she did to show her genuine appreciation.
Last year I met with someone who was wanted to get our business for a product they had launched. She asked me to lunch to chat and share the opportunity. While the conversation and lunch was great, the product wasn’t a good fit for us at that moment, so I took the information she had in case our needs changed and it would be a good fit. She sent me a quick note after the meeting just to say it was nice to meet you and so I had her contact information in my email. Pretty standard so far right? She went the extra mile though by bringing up something we talked about over lunch, my new found hobby of running, and recommended a few trails and races to try. This showed that even though we wouldn’t be partnering at the moment, she was listening and interested in maintaining a connection. Well done.
Some say that sending a “Thank You” note is old-fashioned and unnecessary. I say, think again. While a thank you note is not expected, the impact of giving thanks, regardless of how you do it, lasts a long time. Long after the interaction, conversation or interview, a thank you is a way of leaving a lasting impression and going the extra mile. How do you say thank you?
Sejal is a Recruitment Marketing Project Manager at Intel. She is part of the team that is responsible for Intel’s global employment brand. This team helps connect candidates with Intel and Intel with candidates using channels such as the Jobs at Intel web site, the Life at Intel microsite and other Web 2.0 channels. Sejal specifically manages theJobs at Intel Blog and Intel’s recruitment Facebook strategy. Originally from Toronto, Ontario (yes—a real, breathing Canadian!), Sejal graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with her Bachelor’s in Communications before starting at Intel in 2008. When she’s not working, you’ll find Sejal working at crossing things off of her Bucket List (which includes skydiving, reading 1000 books and traveling the world), eating cupcakes or spending time with family and friends. To learn more about opportunities with Intel, visit intel.com/jobs, follow Intel on Twitter @JobsatIntel or check out the Jobs@Intel blog!