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The Power of a Handwritten Note

By: Tracy Simmons, Human Resources Senior Manager

I had worked at VectorCSP for a few years when I received my first handwritten note from Stan Walz, former VectorCSP CEO, wishing me a happy birthday and encouraging me to “catch more fish!” Over the years, I have received several handwritten notes from VectorCSP employees, each of which was noteworthy. The feelings I had after receiving and reading those notes have never left me.

Over the last few decades, email, texting, and social media reigned supreme as communication channels, and for good reason. Digital communication is efficient. However, this typically fails to connect on a more personal level and misses the opportunity to deepen relationships. Connecting with employees, customers, and colleagues on a personal level is ever more crucial in our increasingly remote, digital, and impersonal age.

While in decline as a mode of communication, a handwritten note conveys something important every single time – value. What electronic communication delivers in economy is often lost in its cold and sterile packaging and presentation. Conversely, handwritten notes are priceless. They take time to draft, with every word carefully curated to convey the writer’s sentiment. There is no grammar or spell check to help you speak to your audience. There is also the ritual of selecting the paper and envelope, affixing the stamp, addressing it to the person, and actually going to a mailbox to ensure delivery.

The energy invested in the process writing and mailing a handwritten note reaches far beyond what an email could achieve. It is unique, warm, and soulful. In our hurley burley world, a handwritten note reminds people that they matter and are important… that you slowed down long enough to thank them for being of consequence in your life. This is, by its very nature, intrinsically valuable to the recipient.

I urge you to set yourself to the ancient task of putting pen to paper and writing a note to a friend or colleague. No matter how sloppy the handwriting or how short the thought, your handwritten note will deepen personal and professional relationships and increase morale. The note may also be a lasting source of inspiration, just as the first one I received from Stan Walz is for me.

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