A few years ago I had a conversation with a great leader named Sherman Henderson about appreciation. This man is a great communicator. People love following him because of his genuine thankfulness and appreciation for people. This is why I follow him.

On one occasion I asked him what he does to connect with people and show real thankfulness and appreciation. He said, “Thank you cards”. I asked him to explain. He went on to tell me that he hand writes anywhere from 20-30 thank you cards per week. He said he would send them out to leaders, young entrepreneurs, family members, and anyone else he just wanted to thank and let them know he appreciates them.

“What about emails, facebook messages, or tweets,?” I said.

He said, “Those are great and people do appreciate that stuff. However, what if you took the time to invest that one extra percent?”

I couldn’t have agreed more with him. As a matter of fact I started sending out thank you cards the next week. I thought to myself, what a great way to show people how thankful I am, and how much I appreciate them. If people could take the time to do something for me, the least I could do is sit down and write them out a thank you card.

Before meeting with Sherman I was the one sending out thank yous and appreciation through all the convenient methods. Why was I doing this? Probably because they were easy and convenient. Great leaders don’t do what is easy and convenient, great leaders do what is hard and inconvenient, this is what makes them great leaders.

When is the last time you sent out a handwritten thank you card? Have you settled for what is easy or convenient or are you willing to invest that extra one percent to make people feel great? I can tell you that ever since I stated doing this I have been blessed. Not only have I learned to sit down and write thank yous, but I have learned to be thankful and appreciate people more than ever.

People desseve more than an email, tweet, or facebook message. They deserve great leaders that are willing to stand up and start showing genuine thankfulness and appreciation. When are you going to start?

Discussion Question: Do you send out thank you cards or do you settle for what’s convenient? If you are a hand written thank you person how has this impacted your life? Please share your experiences.