In today's busy business world, very few people take the time to say "Thank You" to other people who are part of their life. The reality is that nobody is an island, and the successes that we attain are directly connected to other people who contribute to the things we do. Yet, I have seen that it is the exception, not the rule, when a business person goes out of his way to really thank those around them.
I recently had a friend ask me for a referral to an attorney. Because I spent many years working inside law firms, I not only know many lawyers, but also know how to find local experts in a variety of legal practice areas. I connected my friend with a great lawyer who was a perfect match for his needs. I introduced them by email, and never thought about it again. Three weeks later I walked into my office to discover a very nice bottle of wine sitting on my desk with a gracious thank you note from the attorney. He had met with my friend and was retained to represent him in the matter. He wanted to be sure that I knew he appreciated my thinking of him.
I was blown away. I have spent most of my professional career connecting people to others in my professional business network, but I can count on one hand the number of times that I have been thanked with more than the words "thank you". This lawyer, who I did not know well, made a lasting impression on me. Not only will I always put him at the top of the list for future referrals, but I have tried to incorporate unique ways to say "thank you" to those in my life as well.
How about you? Has anyone in your life sent you a piece of business or helped you complete a special project? Have you said thank you with a bottle of wine or other token of appreciation?
One tool that I have discovered is the gift card. While not always appropriate to give to just anyone, a gift card to Starbucks, Old Navy or Bennigan's is a great way to show your gratitude. I have found a company called Quick Gifts (www.quickgifts.com) that allows you to purchase giftcards from hundreds of different companies, or just send a specific dollar amount, thus allowing the recipient to select the vendor of their choice. This can be accomplished with a physical card or as an on-line service, and is a great way to let someone select a customized gift that they will enjoy.
However you you do it, make it your habit to say "Thank You" with more than words on a regular basis. You will be remembered for your efforts.
Have a great day.
PS- My website for my book: "Some Assembly Required: How to Make, Grow and Keep Your Business Relationships" is now live. The book will be released by New Year Publishing in July 2005, but we are now able to take pre-orders. Check it out at www.thomsinger.com.