Handwritten Notes Enhance Your Personal Impact

Today is Tuesday, so this post is on positive personal impact.

If you’re a regular reader of this blog, you know that I’m a retired rugby player.  I played my first match at Penn State in 1968.  My last match was here in Denver in 2001 against a touring side from Australia.  In between time, I have played all over the US and Canada, Europe and New Zealand.  I love the game.  I know most of my closest friends because of rugby.

I don’t play anymore, but I support the game – especially youth rugby.  Bill Baer is a friend of mine.  He coaches the Denver East High School Rugby Club.  Denver East has a very successful rugby program.  I support them financially.

Recently, I received a letter from Bill asking for support for this year’s club.  I sent a check.  In less than 10 days, I received a handwritten note from Andy Gray, a member of the Denver East High School class of 2010 and a member of the rugby club.  The note was on a very nice fold over card with a picture of East High School.  The card was designed by Barbara Froula a well known water color artist here in Denver.

Inside, Andy wrote:

Dear Mr. Bilanich,
Thank you for your generous donation to East High Boys Rugby.  I have played rugby at East for one year.  I got into rugby looking for something to do and to toughen myself up.  I was pleasantly surprised at how much I enjoy the game and the friends I have made.  Rugby has been an important part of my time at East.  I know donations like yours keep East Rugby going.  I appreciate your help. Thank you again.
Andy Gray, Wing
East ‘10

Andy’s card and note reinforces a point I often make about positive personal impact.  In this day of e mail and text messaging, nothing makes a better impression than a handwritten note.

Andy is particularly eloquent for a tenth grader — his mother or his English Teacher should be proud.  That made his note all the more enjoyable for me to read.  And, Bill or one of the coaches, made a great decision to use the Barbara Froula card depicting Denver East High School.  It is a beautiful building that opened in 1925 and was designed by George Hebard Williamson, an 1893 graduate of "Old East" High. Williamson won national recognition for his design of the new East, which has a clock tower modeled after Independence Hall in Philadelphia.  In early 1991, the East High building was declared an official Denver Historic Landmark by the Denver Landmark Commission and the Denver City Council.  Interestingly enough, Bill Baer is an architect here in Denver.

But the point of this post is not to describe the beauty of Denver East High School.  It’s to show the power of a personal handwritten thank you note.  I probably would have continued to support East Rugby because I love rugby, East is my neighborhood school and I like Bill Baer.  However, Andy’s handwritten note guarantees that I’ll be sending another check next year and the year after.

The common sense point here is simple.  If you want to make a powerful and positive personal impact, handwrite notes to those people who help you in your life and career — you’ll be surpised how many they are.  They’ll remember you for it and will be willing to help you again.

That’s it for today.  Thanks for reading.  Log on to my website www.BudBilanich.com for more common sense.  Check out my other blog: www.CommonSenseGuy.com for common sense advice on leading people and running a small business.

I’ll see you around the web, and at Alex’s Lemonade Stand.


PS: Speaking of Alex’s Lemonade Stand – my fundraising page is still open.  Please go to www.FirstGiving.com/TheCommonSenseGuy to read Alex’s inspiring story and to donate if you can.

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