Can “Christmas Cheer” Transcend the Holiday Season?

Can “Christmas Cheer” Transcend the Holiday Season?

You may have a tradition of passing along seasonal greetings to clients, suppliers and staff in the form of gifts or other small tokens of appreciation at this time of year. Sharing this bit of “Christmas cheer” usually involves a mad rush to mail holiday greeting cards, buy dozens of chocolates, and online ordering of gift baskets to mark the occasion.

Have you ever wondered whether the effort (not to mention the financial investment) is worth it? Here’s the answer: Only if your offering transcends the holiday season. In other words, will your efforts be remembered after the tree has been packed away and the gift wrappings have been picked up and carted off?

Offering some “Christmas cheer” that transcends the holidays means putting that little bit of extra effort into your act of kindness. It’s the unexpected business tip, the extra freebie, the shared joke, the common interest – these are the things that make a real connection with clients and keep them coming back for more. It’s an everyday connection that builds relationships and transcends any season.

Here’s one example of how I apply some extra effort. I write poems or personal notes in cards – thank you cards, holiday cards and congratulation cards. They might be words of encouragement, they might be corny poems, but they are always personal.

I also like to surprise clients with articles that I’ve clipped and attached a note to (yes, it may be easier to forward a web link, but it’s no substitute for getting a handwritten card). I also share books, flowers, and other small tokens of appreciation throughout the year.

A hastily signed greeting card with “Best wishes for 2013” will be as sincerely received as offered. A personal comment, a connection – although it may take a few minutes more – is an investment in your relationship.

So, what extra efforts do you make? What acts of kindness have been a good investment for your business? Let’s start an idea exchange!

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