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Dear Heidi: When do I send a Thank You?

Dear Heidi: What requires a “Thank You” note these days? Can I send an e-Thank You?

Is there ever a bad time to send a note of thanks, of appreciation? Any act of kindness deserves to be recognized. Thank you notes are expressions of gratitude and do not need to be long. The rule of thumb is that your Thank you note should be in proportion to the kindness received.

If a friend bought you a coffee, a quick text to thank her is acceptable. A colleague assisting you on a project can be thanked via an email. If you were a weekend guest at someone’s home, try to find time to handwrite a note. He or she put forth great effort to host you, that should be returned with the same effort.

Of course, handwritten Thank you notes are always best–who doesn’t like to receive a handwritten note in the mail? But it isn’t always practical due to our busy schedules.

Regardless of the form you choose, Thank you notes should be sent right away, but no longer than a week afterwards. Any note is better than nothing; the idea is to acknowledge the kindness you received promptly.


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