Category Archives: gratitude

Day 149: The Midway Mark

Life has a funny way of dishing out its lessons.  I started this blog  exactly six months ago with the expectation of ditching social media for a more organic  form of communication. But, my life has changed by leaps and bounds, and social media has truly been a life-creator in the past months.

I am a very private person, so social media did not come as naturally to me as it did to my rock star, PR pro peers at Ohio University. Sure, I had a Facebook. Who didn’t? But, I was not one to Tweet what I was reading or check in to Foursquare. I started dabbling in social media because I knew it had relevance because everyone in my field was talking about it and doing it, but I did not have the fascination with it that seemingly everyone else did.

Eventually all that changed when I started working for a small social media consulting firm in D.C. last year. Besides learning the value of social media, I learned how fun and interesting it could be. A move back to the heart of Ohio in January (and the launch of this blog) have helped me to understand how necessary it is.

To date I have exceeded the one letter per week goal I initially set. My goal was so far surpassed because I wrote dozens of thank you notes to professional and personal contacts I met through social media, in addition to my letter-a-week rule.  I have really aimed to engage with my social network. To do this I:

– joined groups that fostered my personal and professional goals through social media (Cbusr, LinkedIn).
– built on relationships by meeting new contacts in person or by reaching out outside of the social network.
– followed-up meetings with handwritten correspondence. A thank you goes a long way.

I am seriously grateful for the role social media has had in my life this year. Having the opportunity to learn from others, meet new acquaintances, reflect on my own experiences in an open forum and build on my digital relationships in the real world with handwritten communication has been truly life-changing.

My posts on this blog have been fairly un-personal until now, but it’s my goal for the next half of this project to give you a little more insight as to the ways social media is playing a positive and important role in my life. Don’t worry, I will still write letters – hopefully even more than the past six months.

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Filed under gratitude, Letter, social media, thank you

Notes go a long way in the professional world

It has been a very busy week. I started an internship a week ago today at a local PR agency. The experience has been both dizzying and exhilarating as I have been meeting countless colleagues, familiarizing myself with a number of clients and learning how to work a 40-hour work week. Part of being a newbie is integrating professional etiquette into my life and taking in all the advice I can get.

During my time at OHIO University someone (or multiple people) told me it is crucial to write a handwritten thank you note after an interview. Luckily this is one of the pieces of advice I remembered and it might have helped me stand apart from other candidates during the interview process. But, I did not know how integral this advice would be after I entered the professional world. A recent post by Peter Shankman provides useful advice that normally isn’t given. One of the pieces of advice (given by a commenter to the post):

“Send five hand-written personal notes a week. People still like getting mail and it is far less likely to be ignored than an email or voicemail.”

I guess I have a whole new group of people to add to my project. But, what should I write about? Do you write notes to colleagues? If so, to whom and what do you write?

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Filed under gratitude, interviews, notes, professional etiquette, Uncategorized

Day 25: Thanks to you and you and you…

“RT @alternativeair9 @postsecret I leave thankyou notes to the janitors in my school on disposable trays.”

It seems I am not the only one who values handwritten communication. Last night on the CBS nightly News, journalist Steve Hartman investigated the prevalence of thank you notes written in the internet age. Despite many occasions to do so (weddings, interviews, random acts of kindness) most people do not send written “thank yous.” I personally wrote three thank you notes this week, but I have a feeling I am an anomaly. The act of writing a thank you note is intimidating, but it is the sentiment that is most important.

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Filed under gratitude, notes, thank you, Uncategorized