Why the Handwritten Note is Still Powerful Today

Do you remember the feeling you had when you received your first handwritten note in the mail?

[featured-image single_newwindow=”false” alt=”Handwritten Note”]Image Courtesy of Freddy Castro via Unsplash[/featured-image]

I vaguely remember the feeling back then, but I remember how nice it is to return from a trip or rough day, and there is a note waiting for me.

It doesn't happen as much anymore with email and texting, but when you do get that card, it feels special.

In this age of texts and emails, the power of the handwritten note means a lot more.

Four Reasons To Write Handwritten Notes

  1. You Will Be Memorable – people see tons of email each day, but a handwritten card or note causes us to pause for a moment. Of all the notes I have on my wall, not one of them is an email. They are all handwritten. When you pause to write a card, you create a memorable moment for the recipient.
  1. You will be Unique – anyone can send an email or text, but a handwritten note to the recipient brings out the uniqueness of the action you are highlighting. Frank Blake, the former CEO of Home Depot, used to write 100 thank you notes per week to his associates for their contributions to the success of the organization.
  1. You Will Build a Heart of Gratitude– when you take a moment out of your day to say thank you with your personal penmanship, the person receiving your note feels special. Over time, the more you engage in this type of behavior, the easier it becomes, and you begin looking for opportunities to share a word of thanks and gratitude. Not only will the person appreciate it, but your heart expands when you take notice.
  1. You Will Show Care – learning to write notes (or cards) takes time and practice. Whenever I travel, I like to take a few note cards and drop them in the mail from my destination. I want people to know that I value them and appreciate the work they do. I have noticed this trait extending further into organizations. I even see it when I purchase a specialized training course. Several days later, I will receive a thank you note from the author of the program, and it helps me know that I am not just a sale to this person.

Now that you can see the value of writing handwritten notes, who comes to your mind?

Here are a few suggestions to jumpstart your thinking:

  • Christmas Gifts
  • Birthday Gifts
  • Just because
  • I miss you
  • I appreciate you
  • Thanks for joining my team
  • Job interview
  • Thank you
  • Sympathy or bereavement
  • I'm praying for you
  • Thanks for donating to my mission trip
  • Catching someone doing something good at work

How does this work in the workplace?

The workplace can often be a forgotten place when it comes to handwritten notes. We might think that an email will suffice, but a handwritten welcome card for a new employee or visiting executive goes a long way.

I have sent a few cards to folks in my workplace, and I will cruise by their office for something, and there is my thank you card tacked on their wall.

We underestimate the power of the handwritten card and over-emphasize a thank you email. In today’s workplace, you will leave a lasting impression with someone when you take a few minutes to write out a card. I guarantee you will not be forgotten.

A word of caution…

You must be genuine in your note writing campaign. You cannot and must not be fake!

If you write something and do not mean it, you should not send it. The adage your mother used to say still rings true,

If you can't say anything nice to say then don’t say anything at all.

This adage holds true today in letter writing.

3 Day Gratitude Challenge

  1. Identify three people in your life or work and send a note of encouragement, gratitude or thanks.
  2. Over the next three days, write one note or card and mail it.

If we all stopped for a few minutes to write a note of gratitude and thanks to our team or leaders, don’t you think our world and workplace would be different? I do.

[reminder]Will you take the 3 Day Challenge?[/reminder]

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I help facilities manager and planner create spaces that are backed by research, engage employees of all generations, and drive business objectives. I am also the founder of Dave's Book Club – a once per month reading experience designed to help professionals grow their influence.

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