When you value your business associates, it is always appropriate to say so. Expressing your thanks to an associate can be accomplished in many ways; some methods cost nothing and others may set you back a few dollars. Either way, put some time and thought into letting a business associate know how much you appreciate him.
Write a handwritten thank you message, on a card, to your business associate. Be specific and sincere about the task or job you appreciate of him. If a series of good experiences is what you are thanking him for, say so. Compliment his skills.
Treat him to a meal. Have a basket of muffins, bagels or fruit waiting on your co-worker's desk when he arrives at work, along with a thank you note. Or, take him out to lunch at a nice restaurant. If the associate is in another town or you do not feel comfortable sharing a meal together, send him a gift certificate to a restaurant in his area, along with a thank you message.
Order a gift basket to be delivered to your business associate. Attach a card with a message of appreciation.
Honor him publicly. If the business associate has gone above and beyond, exceeding a goal in the company or helping with a major project, host a celebration in his honor. A dinner party in your home, a gathering at a local restaurant or a potluck luncheon in the office would certainly let him know how much he is valued.
Give him tickets to an event. If your business associate is a sports fan, a pair of complimentary tickets to a favorite team's game would be a great gift. Tickets to concerts, movies or theater performances are also perfect ways to say thanks.
Say "thank you." Words are free, but mean so much. Simply go to your business associate and give them thanks. For instance, you could say, "I value you. Your work has not gone unnoticed. I appreciate all you do and I just wanted you to know that."
Keep your thank you efforts on a professional level. Never make a business associate feel uncomfortable when you express your thanks. Do not imply anything inappropriate.
When ordering a gift basket to be delivered, let the florist or gift company know the type of business your business associate is in -- there may be some custom items available for that industry. For instance, some gift boxes come in the shape of a house, perfect to send to a banker who has helped to finance your home or a real estate agent who sent you a client.