Thank you mom!

Q: Last week I was interviewed for a role which wasn’t really
for me.  The interviewer was wonderful though and spent an hour with
me.  She was patient, kind and generous with her time.  Is it worth
sending a thank-you note?  I can’t ever see myself working in the job,
but maybe some day I could see myself working at that company.  Maybe.

A: My mother was right in so many ways. When she made me and my
siblings shovel snow for our elderly neighbors and refuse any money they
offered to pay us. I remember being ticked off at the time but now I
get it. When she made us take in a neighbor’s Boston Globe if they were
away on vacation. She told us it was being a good neighbor. When she
made us write thank-you notes for gifts that perhaps were not to our
liking. She explained a thank-you note showed that we were grateful for
the gesture, and it was not just about the gift.

Write the note. This person gave you a generous gift – her time! So
many of us are running 1000 miles per hour and struggle with focusing on
the person in front of us. She gave you that gift of her time and her
attention. This woman focused on you for that hour. Many of our doctors
don’t even do that in 2016! She will never get that time back. She could
have used that for other tasks like email, online shopping or a
pedicure. She didn’t. She focused on you!

Show that you respected and valued her time.  Thank her.  Your
actions will be memorable to her.  I remember those that thanked me for
my time.  I remember those that didn’t too.

Writing a thank-you note has become a lost art.  I am glad I was
taught by my mother early.  It has stuck with me many years later.  My
mother was right.  Again.  Thank you mom for the valuable lesson!

Pattie Hunt Sinacole is a human resources expert and works for First Beacon Group in Hopkinton, an HR consulting firm. She contributes weekly to Jobs and the Boston Sunday Globe Money & Careers section.