Following meetings or interviews, it is polite to send a thank you message to the business owner. As you are thanking them for their time, a new opportunity, or for their charitable donation to an organization there are proper ways to send your thanks. Unfortunately, many students are never taught and never learn the proper way to write a thank you. Following your business meeting, if you have obtained a copy of their business card you can draft them up a quick note. This can be done in an email or a handwritten card sent to their office. The best way needs to be determined by you all factored on how soon you expect to hear back. Immediate turnaround situations are more often best to email, whereas if you have several weeks before you will hear back, you can send a note to remind them of your previous meeting. Formatting Your Note Following the best practice guidelines for writing up a thank you will help keep you looking professional. Do not sacrifice a potential business deal by not using common sense or courtesy. Choosing the best format for your note is determined on what your meeting was regarding. In most instances, it is best to write up what you are planning to say before sitting down to handwrite a letter. First, find a card that is professional. Swing by the local store’s stationery department, many will have an aisle with this type of thing. If you are at a lost where to start looking, printing companies in Alpharetta or where ever you live, will also carry professional stationery or letterhead. For a business thank you, do not select a card with writing on the inside. A blank card is best for this type of writing, remember it isn’t supposed to be funny it is supposed to be professional. Next, start with a formal greeting. Do not forget their title, if is it something they have worked to accomplish they need to be addressed as such. Besides doctors, you can generally address your letter “Dear Mr. Meeting”, this will strike a professional tone that you are hoping to achieve. Do not send a letter without a name, a hand-written letter should never be sent with “To Whom It May Concern”, the formality lacks in this. After a meeting, you should always be sending it directly to the person, addressed neatly with their name. Following your address line, you will want to begin your card by stating your purpose that is to express gratitude. Do not qualify or excuse with an introduction saying “I am just writing to let you know” or “I am following up with our meeting”, any business professional already knows that is what you are doing. Instead begin by stating “Thank you for your support”, “Thank you for your generous donation”, or “I appreciate the time you set aside for our meeting.” These are great ways to start your letter. Throughout the rest of your letter, you will want to compliment without overdoing it. You want to flatter them and thank them, without seeming like a brown-nose or someone they will not want to do business with. Discuss the importance that their meeting was to you, what you discussed or covered that was impactful. Be clear and direct about your thoughts without adding fluff. Close your letter with an allusion to the future. State that you look forward to hearing from them again in the future days or weeks. Wrap it up with a kind regards and your signature. Always sign your name, even if you have typed your letter. You can also include your full formal signature, which includes title or position. Lastly, make sure your proof read your letter. Nothing is worse than sending out something with spelling errors or mistakes. We always advise typing it up before you hand write it- just so you know exactly what you are going to say and can space accordingly. As you write more often, you will get the hang of it.