Thank You Sounds Right Note

May 1998


Thank You Sounds Right Note

Your mother was right. Manners matter

Imagine the following scene: A customer makes a purchase in a store and heads for the exit. Suddenly a salesman cries out to her over the crowd: "Hey, lady. Come back here." Other customers turn and stare at her. Is she a shoplifter, they wonder. She's mortified. When she gets back to the counter, the salesman demands her receipt, scribbles something on the bottom and hands it back to her. Store policy, he explains flatly.

She looks at the receipt. The salesman has written "Thank you."

This is a true tale, recounted by Pamela Gilberd in a column in The Wall Street Journal.Gilberd, the author of The Eleven Commandments of Wildly Successful Women,has a few tips for retailers and all business people on the proper way to give thanks.

  • "Thank yous are most appreciated when they are least expected," Gilberd writes. This means thanking customers who take the time to complain. After all, she says, they're providing free consulting reports. "Complainers who feel that you recognize their problem and try to correct it often become your greatest promoters."
  • "Thanks and compliments are more powerful when written rather than spoken." (Provided of course, they're not written in the manner described in the first example.) People appreciate it when you sit down and take the time to write a personal note thanking them for their business.
  • "Thank yous help strengthen every aspect of your business." Customers who think you value them will put in a good word for you with their friends. Suppliers who know you appreciate them will go the extra mile when you're in a pinch. Employees will be more productive when you reward them regularly with formal thank yous.

Copyright © 1998 by Bond Communications.


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