Money is nice and it is also necessary to some degree to survive in the world we live in, and yet there are things that are far more important and meaningful to most of us.
I’ve had some accolades, thank you cards and such, but very few have touched me to the point that I have cherished keeping them.
I’ll share a couple with you. The first was appreciation for my wife when I was going on a week long trip somewhere about 15 to 20 years ago. I never recorded the date, but it was a while back. I had this idea to put ‘I Love You’ and other special sticky notes on the backside of kitchen cabinets, bathroom cabinets, and other places so that she might find them when I was gone.
Most have fallen off long ago, but one remains to this day in an upper kitchen cabinet that doesn’t get opened much in comparison to the others:
Another was easily the most special card I have ever received. It is the picture of a little cowboy on the porch playing the toy guitar singing his heart out. I have had this in a prominent place in my office since about 1999. My boss at the time was Ken at Harbor Truck Bodies and he played guitar and knew I did and we played together a couple times just for fun. I came there as an outside sales rep, and in a sudden move, the director of sales and marketing left and Ken asked if I would be interested in helping him out. It required a lot of travel and I accepted without hesitation.
Inside, the card says this:
“Terry, Thanks for making my job easier. Your support over the past weeks is greatly appreciated. My sense is that we are already a better company than before. And it is directly attributable to your acceptance of the Director of Sales & Marketing role. I can not think of another sales exec. in the industry that brings to his or her job such a high level of commitment and quality. Happy Hunting Cowboy!, Happy Trails, K.”
There is no amount of money that makes up for that. Though I was well paid, the card was one of the best bonuses I have ever received.
So often, as managers, husbands, wives, teachers, and just plain people, we forget to express appreciation to each other. It is amazing to me that this is the case. I have learned long ago to try to appreciate people every day in many different ways.
I send different thank you notes, cards, and things to my team members with their checks. I compliment people at the bank, say hi to people as I’m walking, smile at people, send them love, and generally try to uplift people where ever I go.
The difference it makes may sometimes seem insignificant on the surface, but I assure you that the person at the bank that I gave a sincere compliment took it home with her and brightened just a little bit of her day. Sending something like this ever so thoughtful and perfectly chosen card that Ken sent me, lasts for years. It has already been 15 years, and I will keep it the rest of my life.
Take a few seconds to find something worthy of a compliment and express it. Take the time and energy to smile at people. Tell your employees and coworkers how much you appreciate them. Spend some money at Papyrus. Send some flowers, a special book, music CD they might like, or just a thoughtful note. What an amazing gift all of these will be.
Here’s The Real Bonus: I Get More Benefit By Giving Than Receiving.
Spread Some Joy Today–Every day this coming week, find uplifting things to say or send to people to show you are thinking of them or that you appreciate them.