I’ve posted on the topic of Thank You curmudgeons previously. Today I had a site visitor e-mail about this topic that had a slightly different twist, so I thought I would share it with you.
What’s with all the complaining about “Thank You” e-mails? Many claiming they are a waste of time, annoying and shouldn’t be sent. I’ve been on the receiving end of many such e-mails and not once was I annoyed. I smile; then hit Delete. So where is the angst coming from?
Here is a portion of an e-mail received through my site by one of these Thank You protesters in this case for a slightly different reason:
It drives me crazy when people junk up my inbox with a reply that only says, “Thanks”.
Hmmm… I don’t get enough “Thanks.” Since so few do so (in my experience anyway) I think sending a thank you is a nice gesture that should always be appreciated. I cannot imagine ever becoming tired of e-mails that thank me.
When I mentioned this to a co-worker and asked her to stop it, she said that it is proper ettiquette to always respond with a “Thank You” to let the sender know that the message was received. Is that true?
So this isn’t an issue of one showing sincere gratitude, but a coworker acknowledging your e-mails. This is what drives you crazy? Why not just hit the Delete button?
Since you’ve already approached this coworker to try and regain your sanity, you could kindly let them know that not every e-mail requires a response. There really is no need to send a “Thanks” to simply confirm receipt. Send “Thanks” only when you are sincerely grateful.
Unless there is something that specifically needs to be confirmed or responded to because you asked them to, no response is necessary. However, if they asked you a question or for some information and you obliged, they were thanking you and there is really nothing wrong with that.
There are some folks that are natural “thankers.”
I think that if I wanted to know if you read my message, I would turn the tracking option on to send me a confirmation when the message was read.
That is not the correct approach either. Keep in mind that RR/Return Receipt only acknowledges the an e-mail was received/opened – not read — and should be used sparingly anyway.
What is the appropriate response?
A quick thank you will never go out of style… Even if done for reasons one doesn’t agree with, it is still a nice gesture from someone making an extra effort.
If we all get to the pint where being thanked is viewed as annoying; everyone should be concerned. Very concerned.