Thank Your Way to Career Success

The other day I did a workshop for high potential employees of Denver Human Services, a city agency.  A couple of days after the workshop I received a handwritten thank you note from Penny May, a manager there.  Even though I enjoyed doing the workshop, I was pleased to receive the thank you note.

It reminded me of the career success advice in Tweet 78 in my career advice book Success Tweets.  “Say ‘thank you’ often.  You’ll succeed, build a strong personal brand and build a legacy of being a nice person.”

I’m not the only one who believes in the power of “thank you.”  Zach Bussey is a Twitter friend of mine.  Zach really understands social media.  You should check him out on Twitter.  A couple of months ago, Zach and I exchanged a few tweets on the importance of saying thank you.  Here’s one of the tweets Zach sent me…

“The word ‘thanks’ is used less and less.  It’s unfortunate, because it’s the kind of word that can change someone’s day.”

I agree.  A sincere “thank you” always makes my day.  I really appreciate the people who take the time to thank me for these blog posts and my daily success quotes.  My day gets a little brighter every time someone thanks me.

That’s why I end every one of my blog posts with something like, “thanks for reading.”  I really appreciate the time you take to read my blog.  Thanking you is the least I can do to show this appreciation.  From time to time I offer things for free here to show my thanks.  Today, I’d like to thank you by sending two inspirational movies your way.

A while back, I did a blog post where I featured Jeff Hajek’s book, Whaddya Mean I Gotta Be Lean?  I like this book.  And, as I pointed out in the post, Jeff provides some great career advice in a book that at first glance doesn’t seem to have much to do with career success.

Jeff sent me an email the day after the post ran, thanking me for my favorable comments about his book.  I thought that was great – and for me it was enough.  However, a couple of days later, I received a handwritten note in my snail mail from Jeff.  It read…


I appreciate you taking time out of your busy schedule to review Whaddya Mean on your blog.  I am cognizant of the fact that you have gone out of your way to help me, so if there is anything I can ever do to return the favor, please don’t hesitate to ask.

Best wishes,


Handwritten notes are not very common these days.  I was touched that Jeff took the time to write one and send it to me.  By sending it, he really strengthened his relationship with me.  The next time he asks for my help, I am very likely to give it to him.  Also, he offered his help to me.  I feel that I can go to him if I need assistance in his area of expertise.  Jeff used a simple technique – a handwritten note – to build his relationship with me.

My post helped Jeff – any exposure helps.  But I reviewed his book because I thought it would be useful to readers of this blog.  My intent was to provide readers of this blog with useful information.  So my review was a win/win/win   Good for you, good for Jeff, and good for me because I am meeting one of my goals – helping others create the life and career success that they want and deserve.  All of us benefited.

Jeff purchased a thank you card for his note to me.  That was great, but I have an even better idea.  I have invested in a set of note cards with my name printed at the top and my return address on the back flap of the envelope.  I suggest that you do the same – you’ll find yourself writing more thank you notes when you have a card handy.

One of the companies where I do a lot of consulting and coaching work has picked up on this idea.  They have placed blank thank you notes – with one of their core values on the front of the card – at convenient locations in their offices.  Their intent is to get employees to thank one another for good work.  And it worked.  People are sending more of these handwritten notes to their colleagues, strengthening relationships within the company.

The common sense career success coach point here is simple.  Successful people are interpersonally competent.  Interpersonally competent people are good at building relationships.  Thanking people when they help you is a great way to build relationships.  Follow the career advice in Tweet 78 in Success Tweets.  “Say ‘thank you’ often.  You’ll succeed, build a strong personal brand and build a legacy of being a nice person.”  Besides thanking people in person, handwritten notes are a great way of saying thank you.  Handwritten thank you notes establish you as someone who cares about other people and is willing to go a little out of your way to build relationships – the hallmark of interpersonally competent people.

That’s my career advice prompted by a thank you note I received from a manager at Denver Human Services for a workshop I did for them.  What do you think?  Please take a minute to share your thoughts on thank you notes with us in a comment.  As always, thanks for reading my daily musings on life and career success.  I value you and I appreciate the time you spend reading my blog posts.


PS: If you haven’t already done so, I suggest that you check out my career advice book Success Tweets and its companion piece Success Tweets Explained.  The first gives you 140 bits of career success advice tweet style — in 140 characters or less.  The second is a whopping 390 + pages of career advice explaining each of the common sense tweets in Success Tweets in detail.  Go to to claim your free copy.  You’ll also start receiving my daily life and career success quotes.

PPS: Have you seen my membership site, My Corporate Climb?  It’s devoted to helping people just like you create career success inside large corporations.  You can find out about it by going to http://www.mycorporateclimb.


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