In fact, more often than not, good manners coincide with wise business practices. The classic thank-you note is a perfect example of such an.
In every walk of life, people like to be thanked — it shows that someone has recognized their efforts. Beyond birthdays and school gatherings, a thank-you letter goes a long way in the business community toward building goodwill and cementing relationships. A concise and genuine thank you note shows you to be a thoughtful and capable person—someone worthy of doing business with.
We’ve put together a few tips and guidelines for you to get the most out of your thank you letters.
No matter the case, you want to write your thank you note as soon as possible after the event ends. If you thank someone for something small they did 2 months ago, they’ll likely just think you’re weird.
The key to a good thank you note is to be genuine in your emotion. If your tone is flat or you seem too focused on future opportunities, the effect won’t register—you’ll just come off as selfish.
Otherwise, the structure of a thank you note is straightforward and favors conciseness.
Here are the general elements:
It’s essentially a must to use the recipient’s name in the greeting. If you can’t be bothered to address them direct why write a note? For the salutation, using the word “dear” is standard and adds the appropriate level of formality to almost all business letters.
Avoid “To whom it may concern” or “Dear Madam or Sir” greetings at all costs. They make your thank-you note seem distant—if you don’t know the person’s name, find it out somehow!
Lead-ins like “I would like to thank you…,” “I’m just writing to express my appreciation…” are suitable for a formal thank you letter, albeit a bit clichéd. Feel comfortable tweaking this a bit to fit your situation.
In less formal cases, make your opening sentence direct and simple: “Thank you for your help.” Of course, informal thank you notes are rare these days (since you’d likely just message them or tell them in-person).
When speaking frankly about why you’re thanking them, don’t mention money even if it was involved.
For financial deals, terms like “Thank you for your support”, “We appreciate your generosity” suit better and are the phrasing most charities and non-profit organizations use for donations.
Continue your gratitude with a few sentences about the importance of whatever happened between you and the recipient: “your expertise gave me a clear understanding of the department’s KPI”, “it was an honor to work with you,” etc.
Try your best to make this actually sound personal—if you’re thank you note reads like it’s a stock note, that defeats the purpose.
The recipient should feel it was their specific time and/or contribution that you value, and not just anyone who was willing to help. You aren’t sending these out in bulk, so take the time to make it individualized.
If you are not sure of how appropriate it is to give a specific compliment, avoid it.
Being nice and making it clear that you appreciate the person is a part of the thank you note’s existence, but if you are too complimentary it may come off as brown-nosing or sarcasm. It’s best to use short phrases such as: “we greatly appreciated your presence” or “your contribution to PROJECT 123 cannot be put into words.”
Before closing a thank-you note, express your desire to continue the business connection. While this mention should be short and quick, it does show you are serious about your trade, and not just happy to be at the big boys’ table, so to speak.
If you already have ideas for a future cooperation, mention it without going into details. “Our company is going to hold IT workshops and would like you to join” — this is a good hint that you value their abilities while demonstrating your confidence in your own work.
In most cases “Best regards” and “Sincerely” are appropriate salutations. You don’t want to get too cute with a salutation unless you know the person well.
If you prepare a thank you note on paper, always sign your name with a pen. You may also include your title or position if the letter is formal.
Dear Mr. Adams,
I want to sincerely thank you for the referrals you’ve sent our way lately. They have helped our business immensely and it’s great knowing that we have such an accomplished businessman in our corner. It’s truly been a pleasure.
We’ll keep you updated on any changes or upgrades to our services. We won’t let you or the customers you referred down!
Thank you once again.
Mr. Roger Waters
The exact nature of any thank you letter will come down to the formality of the relationship.
If business partners see each other quite often, an informal thank-you note with some light-hearted joking would be a good way to show your appreciation during a work process. This can be through either an email or a hand-written note.
For more formal situations, it’s better to send a hand-written note; an email is likely to get buried in the recipient’s inbox.
No matter the formality however, thank-you notes should be short and to-the-point—this is business, and time is money; if the note is more than half a page, you’re not doing it right.
Your note’s format is the same as other typical business letters. Names, titles, and addresses for both sides, formal greetings and closings, the writer’s signature — all these formal specifics should be included. If you are writing on behalf of a company, typing the note on the organization’s letterhead is a savvy, professional choice.
As with any official business communication, make sure your grammar and spelling are perfect—sending something with improper English will make a worse impression than sending nothing will.
Dear Mr. Tyler,
I would like to thank you for taking the time to meet with me and my colleagues yesterday. I appreciate you sharing your knowledge about the roles and responsibilities required for a project like ours. Your presentation contained several innovative ideas that we are now considering for our project’s structure.
You have our sincere appreciation and we hope to continue working with you in the future. With your permission, I will inform you about our next meeting.
We look forward to seeing you there.
Mr. Zachary Perry
Dear Mrs. Williams,
My colleagues and I wanted to thank you for giving us the chance to pitch you on expanding our business. We know you are an incredibly busy person and we’re grateful you gave us some of your time.
If you’d like any other information or something from our end, don’t hesitate to let us know.
Dear Mr. Jackson,
All of us at Paws Against Violence are eternally indebted to you for your donation. You might not believe us, but every cent counts toward the bigger goal!
We’ve included the most adorable pictures we could take of just a few of the little critters who’ll be benefitting from your donation.
As always, stay up to date by periodically checking our website, and please spread the good word!
All the best
Paws Against Violence
… a small gesture like saying “thank you” goes a long way.
This may seem like a lot of conventions to follow, but all in all the process is pretty simple. You’re thankful for the opportunity, so let the other person know it with a short note. In today’s business environment, politeness and professionalism go a long way.
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These samples can be used for email, or for sending a thank you letter in the mail . And it's best when interviewing at start-ups, technology companies, or other.
Business thank you notes that are well-timed and well-written can really give you an edge. They can help you to win that prized account, score that huge sale or secure that coveted job or promotion.
In fact, a well-crafted business thank you note
can be an invaluable tool to help you build solid relationships in your business or career.
Do you need a short but effective follow-up letter for a recent sales call?
We've got it.
Do you want a "just keeping in touch" note for a client?
How about a note to congratulate a colleague on a recent promotion?
Our business thank you notes page can definitely help.
We've also got post interview thank you note samples and sympathy notes to help you express your condolences to business associates.
Plus, we've included tips on choosing the right stationery to showcase your well-chosen words.
This section of our site will show you how to write business thank you notes that will aid you in making stronger professional connections in your business and career.
The following business thank you notes can be used for existing or potential clients.
We truly appreciate your business, and we're grateful for the trust you've placed in us. Please don't hesitate to call me if ever a problem should arise. We hope to have the pleasure of doing business with you for many years to come.
Thanks for giving us the opportunity to serve you. We greatly value your business. I look forward to meeting you when the job is completed.
Dear ________________________ :
It was a pleasure chatting with you last week. I'm certain that we can help you. If you have any additional concerns, please don't hesitate to contact me.
Just wanted to let you know that I appreciate your referring (name of lead) to me. I'll personally see to it that he is taken care of especially well. Many thanks for thinking of me.
With warm regards,
I had the pleasure of chatting with (name of lead) last Friday. He's a great guy. Unfortunately, I can't be of much help to him. We are truly grateful for the introduction, however. We hope you'll keep is in mind for future projects.
For personal thank you note examples, please see our personal thank you letter and our sample thank you notes pages.
If you'd like to see more business thank you notes that are suitable for customers, please see our customer thank you letters page.
Return from Business Thank You Notes to Thank You Note Examples and Tips Home
They're two simple words – thank you – but they could be the very thing that lands you the job. So, what does your thank-you letter need to contain?
As the hiring process moves more toward automation and speed, taking the time to write a thank-you letter helps you stand out from the crowd and humanizes your application. A thoughtfully written thank-you note goes a long way for your interviewer, plus it provides you with the chance to reiterate your qualifications and add a touch of personality.
"Sending a personalized thank-you note is exactly that – personal," said Rebecca Kiki Weingarten, career transition coach and co-founder/education director at RWRNetwork. "In our high-tech world, it makes a high-touch impact that stands out."
Aside from showing common courtesy, a thank-you note serves other purposes, such as increasing your salary.
According to a study by iCIMS, 63% of recruiters said they would be more likely to hire a candidate who asked for more money and sent a thank-you note than a candidate who asked for less but did not send a note.
Additionally, failure to follow up could leave the impression you're not interested enough to go the extra mile and reach out afterward.
"First, it is a basic appreciation of the time the interviewer spent with you," said Jodi RR Smith, author and etiquette consultant at Mannersmith Etiquette Consulting. "Second, it is a signal to the interviewer that you are aware of higher-level interpersonal skills. Lastly, the thank-you note expresses your ongoing interest in the organization and the job opening."
Smith added that sending a note could show that you know other proper business etiquette, like standing when a client enters the room, not chewing gum in front of the CEO, holding doors open for others, arriving to meetings on time and dressing appropriately.
Following up with an email should be done within 24 hours of the interview, while you're still fresh in the interviewer's mind. Keep the content of the email brief, no more than two or three paragraphs, and reference particular points from the conversation.
Matt Ross, CEO and co-owner of The Slumber Yard, remembers a candidate who went the extra mile in mentioning personal details from their interview. "I briefly discussed my hometown, but what was amazing was that the candidate remembered my hometown and found a way to include it in his follow-up. He said his brother would be passing through [my town], so he made sure to tell him to pick up a cake from a popular bakery there. This not only showed me he was a good listener but also that he was willing to go above and beyond by doing research. It left me with a pretty good taste in my mouth (pun intended)."
Amanda Augustine, career advice expert for TopInterview and TopResume, said that email is the most common method for sending a post-interview thank-you note "because of its immediacy and ability to attach materials or hyperlink to additional information that can help advance their candidacy to the next interview round."
Augustine suggested that it is still important to check out the culture of the company and figure out which method they would prefer. If you're interviewing at a tech startup or see the company utilizes technology, email would likely be the most appropriate.
On the flip side, if the company seems more old-fashioned and stays to the more traditional side of things, a handwritten note mailed to the office might get you further.
"I prefer handwritten notes," said Rachel Sutherland, founder of Rachel Sutherland Communications. "Everyone loves getting mail, especially something you're not expecting. It's kind of funny to think of snail mail as being special, but in this case, it works."
If you're doing a handwritten note, your method of delivering it depends on the timing of the hiring process. Smith said that if you know they'll be making their decision the next day, write the note as quickly as possible. In that instance, Smith suggests writing the thank-you note in the lobby and asking the receptionist to deliver it as soon as possible.
"The content of the message is more important than the method of delivery, be it email or a handwritten note," said Beverly Friedmann, content manager at MyFoodSubscriptions. "That said, a handwritten card is certainly a nice gesture that you don't typically see these days."
Smith suggested including the following elements in your thank-you note:
Augustine cautioned against recapping your entire resume in your thank-you note, since the interviewer has already reviewed it and discussed it with you during the interview, but summarizing your qualifications is appropriate.
As with your resume and cover letter, customize your thank-you note. Double- and triple-check it for grammatical and spelling errors. A typo-filled follow-up can easily ruin the stellar impression you made during the interview. If you met with multiple people, send one note to each person, if you have his or her contact information.
It can, if the note is well written.
"There are times when the candidate has a terrible first round, usually due to nerves," Smith said. "But they took the time to write a sincere and well-considered note explaining their interest in the role and how their experience makes them uniquely qualified."
Other times, Smith notes, there are phone screens instead of in-person interviews, and those who write a thank-you note are automatically invited back for an in-person interview. Sutherland had a similar experience.
"I got my college internship at The Detroit News because I handwrote a thank-you note," Sutherland said. "How do I know? One day in the newsroom that summer, the editor told me I was the only one who wrote a thank-you."
Augustine noted that sending a thank-you note doesn't automatically increase your chances of getting the job; however, dismissing this bit of post-interview etiquette might decrease your chances of receiving an offer.
"While not every recruiter or hiring manager cares whether a candidate sends a thank-you message, I've never heard of a single one, in any industry, think poorly of a candidate for sending a thank-you note," she added.
Based on these tips, here are two templates you can follow for a thank-you letter after the interview:
Good afternoon, Jeanette,
Thank you for taking the time to speak with me yesterday about the staff writer position with Business News Daily.
It was a pleasure meeting with you, and I truly enjoyed learning more about the role and the company. I especially loved hearing about your in-office MVP vote – it sounds like a great way to boost employee morale!
After our conversation, I am confident that my skills in business writing and experience as a copy editor are a great match for this opportunity. I am very enthusiastic about the possibility of joining your team and would greatly appreciate a follow-up as you move forward with the hiring process.
If you need any further information, please do not hesitate to contact me by email or phone. Thanks again, and I hope to hear from you in the near future.
Dear Ms. Smith,
I wanted to reach out to thank you for taking the time to speak with me yesterday about the social media manager position at Business News Daily.
I really enjoyed meeting you and learning more about where your team is headed. Based on our discussion, it sounds like you have a very exciting year ahead with the site updates and customer base expansion.
With the team at such a critical juncture, I'd love to lend my experience and skills to help the team build a stronger customer base and social media presence – particularly bringing my unique lens as a marketer that we discussed from my time working at agencies.
I look forward to speaking further with you and your team to see how I might be able to help you reach your goals. If we're a good match, I would be very excited at the prospect of working together.
Take the time to personalize every letter you send – avoid copying and pasting the same basic form letter. Recruiters will notice these right away, and it won't do you any good.
After you send your email, keep an eye on your inbox. Don't panic if you don't hear back right away – it's normal for a company to take its time in reviewing applications. If several days or weeks go by, send a polite follow-up to ask if there has been any progress in making a decision.
However, don't take this as an invitation to bombard the hiring manager's inbox. Send no more than two well-spaced follow-up emails, and if you don't hear back after that, accept it as a rejection and move on.
For more tips on writing a great thank-you note, visit this Business News Daily article.
Additional reporting by Jennifer Post. Some source interviews were conducted for a previous version of this article.
Sample business thank you notes for topics - wording for business meeting thank you, project thank you, purchasing thank you, salary increase, boss thanks.
Here are hundreds of custom thank you note samples for you to copy and tailor to your needs. When you're stuck for words, sometimes all it takes is a few quick suggestions to get you started.
Saying thank you doesn't have to be difficult. My advice is to keep it short, sweet, and genuine.
Check out these free thank you note samples for business and personal occasions. Find a situation that matches yours and browse the sample notes to get inspired.
Instead of saying "Thank you for the...", try:
Instead of saying "It's great," how about:
Here are the Top 10 Most Frequently Asked Questions ( FAQs ) about thank you notes. The answers are taken from professional research, etiquette experts, and personal experience.
1. How long do I have to write a thank you note?
Obviously send them out as soon as possible, but within 2 weeks is generally acceptable. For wedding gifts, it's 2 weeks for presents received before the wedding and within one month for ones received after. For gifts received while you were sick, write them as soon as you're well enough.
2. Do I have to write a thank you note for a thank you note?
No. But if you received a thank you gift and the giver wasn't there to thank in person, then yes, you should write a note. (If the gift is from a close friend or relative, you can email or call.)
3. When do I need to send a thank you gift in addition to a note?
This is really a judgment call on your part. A big over-the-top gift for a comparatively minor favor might embarrass the recipient and backfire on you. For example: Did you see the Seinfeld episode where Elaine buys George a cup of coffee, so he buys her a coffeemaker as a thank you? Elaine was more confused than impressed. In this case, a simple verbal "thanks" when George received the coffee would have been sufficient.
Read more Top 10 Thank You Note Samples FAQs...
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When is the last time you received a thank you card from a business? Here are thank you note wording samples you can use to write.