Living with Etiquette: Saying Thank You: Letter or Email?

The charming thank you letter: For some, this is an e-thank you card that can be done with a quick click of the mouse. Off it goes to its recipient. For others it’s a carefully thought-out note with sentiments of gratitude on hand-picked stationary and a decorative stamp.

However, what method of thank you letter is best and for which situation? In today’s busy and cost-cautious society, emailing thank you letters has grown to become quite popular. There are a wealth of innovative companies out there that can make an e-thank you letter in seconds with words that are true, genuine and very heart touching – not to mention no postage necessary.

But I have to ask myself, is it the best method? What if you select beautiful stationary paper and actually take time to write out your own words to that special someone to tell them “thank-you”? I believe this protocol still stands true if the event, or deed, is formal in nature; a hand written note is in quite good taste. Whereas for an informal occasion a simple yet decorative e-thank you card would be welcomed.

For example, after a business interview or a wonderful dinner party held in a home, a nice handwritten note of thanks works well. However, an e-thank you card would be appropriate
for a networking event or perhaps an informal social gathering.

The point here is the fact of saying “thank you,” which I believe cannot be done enough in today’s society. By default, it is always nice to receive a handwritten note, regardless of the occasion, from someone telling you just how much you are appreciated. For a person to take time out from their busy schedule to think enough of you to say thank-you speaks volumes.

Here are a few quick things to be mindful about when sending your next thank you letter.

1. Send a “handwritten” thank you letter immediately following a business interview.

2. When sending an e-thank you letter ensure the template allows you to leave a personal note. This provides a nice personalized touch.

3. Always provide your mailing address and or email address on your thank you note to allow the recipient to communicate back to you.