How do you show your appreciation?

By: Lori T. Williams, Owner/Managing Attorney of Your Legal Resource

I was honored to receive the following statement from a client in response to giving him some advice and resources:  “Wow, thank you very much for this information. I’m blown away with your awesomeness”.

I really appreciate it when someone stops to acknowledge me for something I’ve done for them.  Often, it is something I perceive as “just doing my job”, or proper service for a client.  However, I appreciate their sentiments nonetheless.   Do you ever brush off their comments as “no big deal?”  While it may appear modest or otherwise appropriate to respond this way, it actually robs them of the opportunity to acknowledge you.  Their acknowledgement is a gift and by not accepting it as such, we diminish their sentiment. It’s kind of like returning someone’s gift, right in front of them.

Some people struggle with receiving an acknowledgement.  Others have a problem giving it.  Both are equally important.  Giving acknowledgement comes fairly easy to me because of how I’m wired.  When someone shares their expertise and it helps me solve a problem or gain understanding of a topic important to me, I truly appreciate it and I tell them the impact it had on me.  Do you ever catch yourself wanting to show or express appreciation, but then hold back because of how it might be interpreted?

There are appropriate ways to acknowledge one another in the business community.  These should be done regularly and freely:

Take time to write a hand-written thank you note

Whenever I take the time to do this, I hear back from the person how much they appreciated it.  With the barrage of emails and text messages today, the handwritten note is a lost art form.  Why not bring it back?  Thank you notes are often saved when they are handwritten.  It’s not just the words or the sentiment, but the actual penmanship that makes it special.  Someone once told me, “It’s like you receive a little piece of that person when they write you a note by hand.”

Write a  testimonial:

Whether it is on LinkedIn, or a tweet through Twitter, or an acknowledgement on someone’s wall on Facebook, or even a simple email that they can cut and paste and add to their website, a quality testimonial will make a positive impression on everyone who sees it.   A good testimonial captures the sentiment of the impression the other person made on you, as well as the impact of their actions (i.e.  the positive results of their product or service).

Pick up the phone and tell them:

Even if they aren’t in when you call, leave a detailed voicemail message about what they did that made a positive impression on you.  Write it out ahead of time and practice it out loud a few times so that you can say it concisely and with enthusiasm.  When I get a voicemail message like that, I save it and listen to it over and over again.

Try these things regularly with different people over the next 30 days and see what happens.  I’d love to hear your results.  I bet it will impact your business and attitude in a positive way.



-Do you struggle more with giving or receiving acknowledgements?

-What ways do you show your appreciation?

-What is the most memorable acknowledgement you received during your past/present career?

Lori T. Williams

Lori T. Williams is an attorney based in Birmingham, MI, licensed in 1989.  As owner of a legal referral business called Your Legal Resource, PLLC, Lori personally assists individuals and small businesses in need of legal advice or representation in Metro Detroit by connecting them with the right legal specialist to meet their needs.