Do you remember the days when hand-written cards were more of the norm than the exception? Client desks were decorated with cards that would remain visible for many days if not weeks. Gifts would show up that had a personal touch that put a smile on the client's face.
It seems like in today’s hectic business world where no one seems to have any free time, professionals have become complacent when it comes to showing gratitude toward their business contacts. Hand-written cards are perceived to take too long and are easily replaced with a digital card produced by the firm, or a simple email that would quickly disappear in the Inbox.
I get it because I have been guilty of this complacency myself. I must remember that if it weren’t for many of you reading this note right now, my business wouldn’t be this successful today.
Now, is the perfect time to think about how you want to express your gratitude to your key contacts. We are in the month of Thanksgiving, and it is only fitting to give thanks to everyone who has helped and is currently helping you grow your business. Additionally, you are more likely to stand out this month compared to the month of December when you are among the masses of others sending notes and gifts.
If you plan to send gifts, how meaningful are the gifts? Is it a standard treat basket from Costco or something tailored to what you know your contact will appreciate? I encourage all my clients to learn early in the relationship what their contact appreciates outside of work. It not only gives them more reason to stay in touch with their contacts more often, but it also gives them ideas around gifts that will be more meaningful.
When you are considering who should receive your kind gesture, think beyond your existing client base. Remember other key contacts such as your colleagues and other referral sources who are pivotal in growing your business.
Acknowledging others is an often-overlooked practice yet when you do it, the payoff can be way bigger than the time and energy you invested in doing so. Let’s not get complacent, especially during the month of giving thanks.
I challenge you to step it up not only this month but anytime throughout the year when a simple acknowledgment to one of your contacts is warranted.
I’ll start this trend by expressing my gratitude toward you! I appreciate you being part of my community and look forward to hearing from you and what you have done to acknowledge your contacts.
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving break!