30 years ago growing up as a child I remember my grandmother saying to me when I had received something, what do we say? The answer of course was Thank you. Now it seems that phrase, those two little words have been removed from the English language here in the US. I am not sure why. As kids we would be given THE STARE, or have something that we wanted withheld for not saying it. It was more than a courtesy. It was an acknowledgement. It was an understanding that you were not only obliged to say but something you meant. Thank you for getting that for me. Thank you for helping me. Thank you for showing compassion. Thank you for being human.
Somewhere it became something either too hard or to “uncool” to say. It is not that we stopped acknowledging deeds we just changed the script. We now say “no problem” or “forget about it”. We stopped writing thank you letters. No more cards of thanks for presents or the help that was given. In the recruiting world I used the word thank you to much. I wrote thank you letters, emails, and left messages of thanks for both consultants and clients. Thank you for your resume and the RIGHT to represent you to new a position. Thank you for letting me to help you as a customer or for allowing me to fill your open position. Then something happened. I thought THEY owed me. The client cannot fill the job without ME. The consultant cannot find a job without ME. They owe ME. They should be thanking ME. I feel like I have lost my way. I stopped saying thank you. I took for granted that people called me. Managers asked for me. My hubris knew no bounds. I stopped saying thank you.
Today, I helped someone. It was nothing special, at least not to me really, but in that one moment it meant something to someone enough to say thank you to me. I was floored. It had been so long since I had heard it. It made me realize that with all that happens around me that sometimes the two words THANK YOU can meen more than any gift basket, bottle of wine, or monetary compensation to someone. The voice was small. Yet there it was. Thank you.
Tomorrow I have a lot of people to say thank you to. But first, let me say, thank you for reading this.