A United pilot hand wrote notes to passengers — and you should do the same at work too
Put a pin in all those emails you’ve been sending.
No one likes a delayed flight, but the flight crew can make you feel better about it — as one United pilot proved this week. The pilot gave handwritten notes to passengers to thank them for understanding about the delay, according to The Denver Channel.
United Airlines passengers en route to DIA receive note from pilot after delayed departure https://t.co/8A96gczvK6
— Nancy Martinez (@nmartinez783) May 17, 2017
One passenger who got the note was thrilled, telling The Denver Channel, that the pilot “understood that his passengers are real people and wanted to make sure we knew what was going on. Big shout out for John [the pilot]!”
Experts say you should take a page from this pilot’s book — and handwrite more notes at work. “Used in the right way, they can be very powerful, come across as personal, caring, thoughtful and get attention,” says executive coach Marc Dorio. Or as career coach Hallie Crawford puts it, “Across-the-board, a handwritten note — especially these days with texting and email — sends a very positive, earnest message, and it stands out.” And John Coleman, the author of “Passion & Purpose: Stories from the Best and Brightest Young Business Leaders,” recently explained in the Harvard Business Review that handwritten notes — in this world where “so much communication is merely utilitarian” — are now “more important than ever.”
So when should you use a handwritten note over sending an email? Dorio says they’re smart to use to thank someone after an interview or to give a colleague or direct report a kudo for a job well done. Crawford recommends using them for a situation that has “a more emotional tone to it … versus just being business.”
That said, there is a risk to using them. They “could also be interpreted as anti tech or old fashioned,” Dorio notes — so someone applying for a high-tech job might want to steer clear. And, of course, anything that needs a timely response should be done via email. Crawford adds that you also shouldn’t use them for touchy subjects or things that could cause conflict; better to pick up the phone for those issues.
When you write a note, make sure your penmanship is on point, Dorio says; check for spelling and clarity too. This guide is helpful for writing the perfect hand-written note.
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