It’s standard and typical that around the holidays specifically we count our blessings and give thanks to those who have always been there for us, to those who have helped us succeed, and to the many who patronize our business when there are so many out there to choose from.

Give Thanks Throughout the Year

Not so easy is remembering to thank people for their kindness, assistance, referrals and their business year around…and although there is an exchange of payment for services rendered, it’s interesting how sometimes, especially with a service-oriented business, the lines can become skewed.   Have you ever had a customer you became so familiar with that you almost forgot that they were actually a client? Indeed it can be tricky.

These are the ones who become so dependent on you that it begins to feel like with every job you complete that you are doing them a favor.  Woah… time to rewind here!  They are paying you, and may need a little hand holding sometimes (okay, some need a LOT of hand holding) but they are the customer.  They are doing you the favor.   Out of all the other providers, they chose YOU.  If you need to reset the boundaries because the client calls you, texts you, messages you, and shows up at your door just a little bit too often, by all means do so.  Easier yet is setting boundaries before you need to change the rules of the game half way through.  Keep in mind that there is another word for these little annoyances, and that word is “business”.

Appreciation

Being sincerely appreciative and thankful goes a long way in maintaining healthy business and personal relationships.  Maybe in addition to that quick text message saying, “Thanks Steve, I’ll be in touch” you can send a thank you card with an actual hand-written note that says, “Steve, if I haven’t said it enough lately I really appreciate the opportunity to work on your account and I value your business.   Thank you!”

Can you imagine what Steve would think getting this in the mail alongside his bills and restaurant coupons?   And written in real ink?  This tells him that he is valued.  Nobody can hear that too often, and everybody likes to receive something tangible that can be re-read… It’s like having someone thank you again, and again, and again…

The Bottom Line

Always remember that giving thanks is not just a holiday thing.  Count your blessings throughout the year and share your thankfulness with heartfelt appreciation any opportunity you get.  It will help you maintain your already strong relationships, and it will strengthen your new ones.

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