Writing the perfect thank-you note

Learn more about how to write the perfect thank-you note.

Do you dread writing thank-you notes? If so, you probably know all of the tricks to avoiding them, such as calling and saying thank you instead, sending a quick e-mail or text, or even using Skype or FaceTime. That may be perfectly acceptable when you’re thanking your sister for a birthday gift or letting Aunt Helen know you received the gift card she sent you, but it’s still important to know how to write – yes, with a pen and paper – a thank-you note.

Writing a thank-you note is appropriate for when you need to thank a prospective employer for taking the time to interview you. Or, when you get married or graduate and need to thank guests for their gifts. Another good time is when you want to thank someone for their hospitality, generous donation or kind gesture.

Writing a thank-you note isn’t all that difficult. It’s really just a skill that needs to be practiced. Writing thank-you notes are important because they show the person you’re sending them to that you took the time to get a pen, find a thank-you card and send them a personalized note of your appreciation.

How do you get started with this amazing skill? Michigan State University Extension recommends following these tips:

  • Start with a pen and then buy or print from the Internet or store a thank-you card.
  • Consider for a moment what you want to write so your thoughts are clear. It’s OK to practice writing what you want to say on a scrap piece of paper before you actually write it in the thank-you note.
  • Be sincere and write from the heart. It’s OK to show emotion such as enthusiasm or gratitude.
  • It doesn’t have to be long. Remember, you’re writing a thank-you note, not a thank-you letter. Just a few sentences will do the trick as long as they are thoughtful and sincere.

Writing a thank-you note might be a dreaded task, but you must also consider how the person receiving the note may feel. It’s still fun to get snail mail and it can be a huge compliment to think that someone took the time and effort to write a note and put it in the mail. Consider they may keep it and put it on their refrigerator, hang it on a bulletin board or keep it in a file for when they’re needing some words of encouragement. Remember, a thank-you note is reflection of you, thoughtful and considerate.

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