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How to Write a Thank You Letter of Appreciation

Updated on February 14, 2009

The Importance of Learning How to Write a Thank You Letter

Learning how to write a thank you letter to show appreciation is an important skill. The art of letter writing is becoming obsolete. It is a shame. Receiving a handwritten letter, especially a well-written thank you letter, is one of the greatest joys. Even a simple thank you note is appreciated.

I agree with Randy Pausch, the author of "The Last Lecture". Randy had pancreatic cancer and was given just months to live. He had a wife he adored and three small children he loved. Yet he still kept a stack of blank pages handy on his desk to send out thank you letters to whomever he felt deserved them. If Randy could find time to write thank you letters to show his appreciation for people, I believe anyone can.

Randy Pausch The Last Lecture

Thank You Letter Examples

If you are stuck on how to write a thank you letter, here are a few short examples to get you started on the road to writing thank you letters well:

Dear Mrs. Mills:

Thank you for volunteering to help with the food drive Tuesday. You were a joy to be around and worked tirelessly. We sincerely appreciate the contribution of your time.

Toleman Martin, President Valleydale Food Drive

Dear Evelyn:

Thank you for the baby shower gift. Little Abby will look adorable in those booties. We will send you a photo to prove it! We enjoyed seeing you.

Bob and Emily

Thank You Letter Tips

Here are a few tips for learning to be successful at writing thank you letters:

  • First off, absolutely do not send a thank you letter through email. And definitely don't send a text message!
  • The most important thing to remember when learning how to write a thank you letter is to write with sincerity. Find something to say that comes from the heart. Show your appreciation with a few well-chosen words.
  • Try to send your thank you letter no longer than a week after the event or act of kindness has occurred.

Occasions and Reasons for Thank You Letters

Thank you letters don't have to be reserved just for thanking someone for a gift or card, or for business purposes. There are several occasions that may prompt writing a thank you letter. Some of them may be thanking a volunteer for a charity project, a person helped you plan a party, or a person gave you a good reference.

Always send a thank you letter after a job interview. It could be the clincher that gets you the job over another job applicant that wasn't as considerate.

Basically, if someone did something special for you, let them know with a personally handwritten thank you letter. I guarantee that they will be touched and impressed.

Children and Thank You Letters

One last note about writing thank you letters- If you have children, get them into the habit early of writing short thank you notes after birthdays and other holidays. Also teach them the value of a thank you note just to show appreciation for someone. It is one of the best gifts you can give your children.

How to Write a Thank You Letter Video


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