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Networking Series - Chapter 14 - Notes of Congratulations

DATE: 10/15/2015
Sending a few words of congratulations is one opportunity for you to keep your network revved up.

If you are able to recognize, acknowledge and celebrate others' accomplishments, that is wisdom. When people remember you on the dates personally or professionally important to you, it is an indicator of they care about you. Imagine how honored you feel when you receive a note of congratulations. So, you can guess that your counterpart would also be quite honored to receive a call or note from you. 
-  Birthdays 

-  Job changes 

-  Promotions or assignments 

-  Award ceremonies 

-  New Year and feast wishes 

-  Weddings and new bow baby messages 

Of course it is not just a matter of congratulations. You should also be "there" on difficult days. Letters of condolences are as equally important as nice wishes. How to congratulate? You can forward your message when face-to-face, on the phone, by e-mailing, sending texts or through one of the social networks. You may want to send a gift along with your note (a bouquet for promotions, an elegant accessory for a wedding etc.) 

(Note: If you're only planning to send a gift, make sure to read the following chapter!) 
Some find it more genuine to have face-to-face meetings or talk on the phone (Their voice and body language express their emotions more sincerely). "Things told fly away, things written remain", some others say. 
As much as it seems easy, writing has its traps. The most challenging part is ensuring simplicity and preciseness. Some letters may look a bit "dull" or some employ wax poetic in an attempt to reflect the enthusiasm we would otherwise express on the phone or when face-to-face. Avoid an excessive tone in congratulations messages. 
Feeling lost among the tones and words to choose? Then, you may want to attend a particular seminar. Writing may look like a piece of cake, but it is essential to learn about the "subtleties" of writing. The style of your note will vary depending on your recipient. Even when keeping a friendly tone, don't go beyond the respective attitude in a note to a newly-made friend. Avoid addressing them in an informal manner. The American way of addressing people has recently become more popular in Turkey but play it safe and don't address them in first person without receiving affirmative signals from your recipient. Moreover, not everyone will consider your smileys are sincere. 
Watch out everyday habits! 
When it comes to expressing nice wishes for religious days, we generally prefer sending e-mails or short texts. Sending cards might as well work! 
Tap into your own hand-writing for a "personal touch". Of course it would be hard for you to hand-write to all your contacts. Still, you may want to prepare little notes occasionally. 
You'll see how motivating it is! 
I personally call my contacts on religious days and special occasions. This is the most vivid and personalized way of proving that you remember your counterpart despite your busy schedule. Personal visits to your seniors or special protocols will also be quite effective, depending on how close you are with them.

Ertugrul Belen & Optimist Publishing House