Today’s question came from students that I worked with over the past few weeks at both the University of Kansas and Johnson County Community College:
If I met with someone several weeks ago, but neglected to send a formal thank you note, am I too late?
Though I tend to advocate for immediate acknowledgment of one’s time or gifts of other resources, my general feeling is that appreciation is always, well, appreciated!
If you interacted with someone or received other kindnesses from them, it is, of course, appropriate to say, “Thank you.” My favorite way to do that is to send a handwritten thank you note. And, if you failed to do it right after your interaction occurred, take time now… yes, right now… to do so.
In your letter, you can say something like, “…apologies for my delayed note of appreciation. I continue to benefit from our conversation and remain grateful for your support and assistance…” or something to that effect.
In fact, truth told, people have mentioned to me that they often appreciate the delayed note – not because it was delayed, but because it was clear to them that, even after so many weeks or months had passed, the interaction was meaningful and, indeed, appreciated.
So, don’t delay if possible… but, if it happens, still reach out with your words of thanks.