By Deb Walton, Chief Gift Officer & Queen of Client Courting

Most of us have been taught to say thank you when someone gives something tangible to us. At a minimum it’s considered polite. On the other end of the scale, expressing gratitude can help us build better relationships, make new friends and even build our business. But we’re not always good at gratitude—we get distracted, time passes and next thing you know, we’ve completely forgotten about someone’s kind act and our gratitude is MIA. This can lead to hurt feelings, entitlement and, in extreme case, anger.

Certainly no one wants to be “that” person who doesn’t appreciate others. In the business world, it can be the kiss of death to ignore the important contributions of customers, referrals, employees and vendors. To help you avoid the pain, here are a few simple steps to ensure that gratitude is an integral part of your business (and life) strategy.

Awareness

As we rush from one meeting to the next, it’s easy to forget to thank a new customer or a helpful employee. One easy strategy is to add “Thank You” to the sales check list or send yourself a quick text reminder as you leave a customer’s house. If you build it into your on-going process, it will become second nature and you’ll be surprised at how much more frequently you have reason to thank someone.

Acknowledgement

Being grateful is good, but what really sets you apart is acknowledging that thankfulness. Think about how impactful that person’s actions were for you and your company and consider an appropriate and proportional acknowledgement. As an example, a new corporate customer who has just signed a $25,000 monthly contract with your company probably would appreciate a hand written note, but the impact on your company is fairly significant, so consider additional ways that you can show your gratitude—an initial thank you gift or a monthly leave behind treat are great examples of appropriate acknowledgement.

Action

Lastly, and most importantly, is taking action. All the awareness and acknowledgement in the world don’t mean a thing if you don’t take action. Whether it is writing that thank you note or ordering a gift to be sent to a new customer, the act of gratitude isn’t complete until you send it out into the world. Add a Gratitude action item to your weekly calendar to ensure you make time for this important final step.
Awareness, acknowledgment and action will ensure that you and your company have a perfect A+++ for Gratitude. To take out some of the guesswork Indy City Gifts has created a Cheat Sheet to help you find the ideal way to show your gratitude:

Gratitude Cheat Sheet

  • Positive Online Review =
  • Potential Customer = Cookie Stacker
  • $5,000 Contract =
  • Referral from Past Customer = Personalized ???
  • New Vendor =
  • Etc.

Have a reason to thank someone that isn’t included on the Gratitude Cheat Sheet? Give Deb Walton at Indy City Gifts a call at 317-782-4438, she’ll come up with the perfect way for you to say “Thanks!”