I am a firm believer in the power of a thank you note. Not only does a handwritten note delivered via snail mail convey your gratitude, it also says to the recipient "You are important and worth my time." A note may even say it better than you could in person!
Did you just ace an interview? Follow up with a thank you note! Did you have a real conversation with a small business owner as she stood behind the counter? Let her know you appreciate her time. Did you network over coffee with a local after a big move? Thank her for the suggestions on where to get involved and places to check out.
The point isn't to expect something from being polite, but you may be surprised what opportunities may spring from some ink on a page. Spread joy and make someone's day!
So what sparked this article (my first article for LinkedIn)? I recently "interviewed" with an exclusive networking group tailored to meet the needs of young female professionals in their 20's and early 30's, Underground Social KC. I say this organization is exclusive because they limit the number of members in each industry to one. That's right, ONE woman in marketing, one in healthcare, one in finance, you get the picture.
So after a great chat over coffee with one of the organization's founders where we discussed all things Kansas City she told me that I was a great fit but I had to be put on a waitlist because too many marketing professionals want to network (imagine that).
I understood. I was disappointed, but I understood. So even though I was not invited to join USKC, I was thankful for the many other ways to get involved that we had discussed -- rec sports leagues, wine bars to check out, new pet-friendly venues that may or may not have been modeled off my hometown. So I wrote a thank you note on company stationary because that's what I had available, put it in an envelope, attached a stamp, and mailed it off.
I can't positively claim that my thank you note opened a seat in this networking group or if the timing was coincidental, but I was invited to join. I attended my first event just last night. I can only say that I am HOOKED!
Originally published on LinkedIn on April 20