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Professional Ways to Say Thank You

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In the business world, there are a variety of circumstances that warrant a sincere thank you. Many people wish to show their appreciation to a professional but are unfamiliar with the appropriate etiquette for doing so. Whether you want to thank a doctor for his help, your banker or a guest speaker who came to your conference, it is important to know the dos and don'ts when it comes to being appreciative in a professional capacity.

Thank-you Letter

A thank-you letter is a professional way to thank someone. Depending on the scenario, decide whether a formal typed letter or a thank-you greeting card is more appropriate for the recipient. For instance, if you are a manager who wants to thank an employee for doing an excellent job, write a personal message inside of a greeting card. However, if you are writing a thank-you letter to someone who just donated money to your school, it is more appropriate to type your letter on business letterhead. In either scenario, make sure your thank-you letter does not contain grammatical errors, and that it is clear and concise. Your enthusiasm and sincerity should be expressed, but your tone must remain professional. Make letters personal so they do not sound generic.

Gifts of Appreciation

Giving gifts of appreciation is an effective way to thank someone in a professional capacity. In the business world, office-related gifts are appropriate between professionals, such as giving someone a special pen, paperweight, business card holder or stationary. If you wish to show your appreciation to a female doctor, accountant, a teacher or your hairdresser, sending a bouquet of flowers to her place of work serves as a professional way to say thank you. In the manager/employee capacity, professional gifts of appreciation include gift cards and office trinkets.

Ceremonious Recognition

Many professionals hold formal ceremonies where they recognize and thank individuals who did something truly outstanding for the business. During the ceremony, introduce the people who are being honored by name and give a brief explanation as to why they are being thanked. You also may present the guest of honor with an award. In formal settings, people who are being recognized may be asked to give a small speech.

Award Certificates

Many business owners and managers use award certificates as a professional means of thanking someone internally. For instance, to thank an employee for his great customer service, a manager may print a colorful "customer service award" as a thank you to the employee. Employees often hang their paper award certificates in their office or keep copies of them in their personnel file to document their professional achievements.