Saying Thank You

March 29, 2016

It’s drilled into our heads when we are little: Always say please and thank you. Why? Good manners help you make friends and can set the stage for your personal and professional development. Companies are smart to take notice. A well timed thank you can cement a relationship and make a customer feel confident about a purchase they have made with you.

But that thank you had better be sincere. If not, it may backfire. I recently had an experience with a company’s “thank you” that made me think twice about doing business with them again. It was last year, when I achieved a higher level in a hotel’s rewards program. I received a nice thank you letter. Upon reading it I found that it wasn’t just a thank you letter, but also an advertisement for a timeshare.

OK, I get it. Companies should look at a thank you as an opportunity to set up the next sale. However, a thoughtless or shameless promotion can leave a sour taste in one’s mouth. I like to feel good about my purchases. Give me a chance to enjoy it before you go in for the kill.

There are lots of ways to say thank you. A personalized note or a simple phone call will do. When I visit customers, meet with our business partners and talk with our employees, I always try to thank them for each of their efforts. The hard work we do for each other and for what they do for me is greatly appreciated. Showing this appreciation in a sincere and truthful manner should be done as often as possible.

How do you thank others? I’m always looking for new ways. Send your thoughts to

All the Very Best,

Joseph Clayton

President, Sea-Land Chemical Co.