The high of being thankful for friends and colleagues who help out. The low of doing favors for people who can’t be bothered to say thank you. Gratitude vs. frustration.
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Over the last few weeks I experienced gratitude and extreme frustration. Let’s start with the good.
I’m working on a couple of projects for clients and for my business (foreshadowing). Needing feedback to make sure I was on the right track, I reached out to three friends, professionals in their respective fields. I asked for their help in reviewing the materials I was working on.
All three immediately said yes. All three reviewed and promptly sent me their honest feedback, edits and comments.
First things first: I said thank you. Expressed gratitude. Let them know how much I appreciate their time. Each of them is extremely busy but are only too happy to help a friend.
So the proper thing to do is be grateful. First and foremost.
I consider myself very lucky that I have people in my professional network who I can “lean on” when needed. I don’t abuse their friendship but I know it’s there when needed.
However, when the tables were turned, all I heard were the sounds of silence.
Using my network, I am only too happy to pass along gigs to consultants and companies. Plenty of things come across my desk and when I can, I’ll forward it to the person/company who I think can provide the best service possible.
No big deal. Why not help a friend who could use a paid job? Why not make a connection for someone seeking professional help? I ask for nothing in return. No finder’s fee. I feel it’s a matter of common courtesy to help where I can.
And you know what? After the last few weeks, I realize that maybe I shouldn’t expect a thank you in return. People gonna people.
I made some intros for people. Passed them potential paying opportunities. After the initial e-intro, radio silence. No follow up from the org or the consultant if they’ll be working together.
Actually, I didn’t need the follow up. I found out on my own that in the end, all the matches worked out and contracts were signed. But the parties themselves did not inform me.
When I discuss this issue with other consultants, I get a lot of 🙄 because the same thing has happened to them. One too many times. Which led me to ask: Have you worked with that company again? Same answer every time: Nope. If they can’t be bothered to email me and thank me, that tells me a lot about who they are as a person. And that’s not someone I should be recommending out.
Sounds Of Silence
So why am I writing about this on my blog? I’m not complaining, not kvetching. But I did wanna pass this along:
When someone helps you find a job, thank them. By phone. By email. Even better? With a note attached to a bottle of wine.
But do something! If you lack the ability to communicate gratitude, you can’t expect me to pass you a gig ever again. It’ll hurt your marketing because when someone asks me for a recommendation for you…
“Fools, said I, you do not know
Silence like a cancer grows
Hear my words that I might reach you”
The Sound of Silence, Simon and Garfunkel
It’s not rocket science. Be appreciative. That’s all I’m asking.
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