Top 5 Opportunities To Write Meaningful Thank You Notes at Work

There are many opportunities to write thank-you notes at the workplace. While you should make an effort to say thank you whenever possible, there are several occasions where writing a thank-you message is worth the effort.

Sharing your gratitude and appreciation can help you demonstrate your soft skills. Thank-you notes can be handwritten in a lovely thank-you card, sent in an email, or an instant message (such as Slack, Microsoft Teams, etc.).

A handwritten note card takes slightly more time, but it's more meaningful. Do you ever see printed thank-you emails pinned to a cube wall? I haven't. However, I have seen thank-you note cards proudly displayed.

Knowing how to write a good thank-you note is key. Your thank-you note should be specific, including why you are saying thank you and why you are grateful.

Here are the five chances you can practice gratitude by writing thank-you notes at the workplace.

1. After Someone Helps You

When you benefit from receiving help from a mentor, coworker, or boss, take a few minutes to send them a thank-you email or write them a handwritten note.

While it may feel like you are thanking someone for doing their job, extra appreciation can help people feel that their time or knowledge is valued, especially when they've gone above and beyond to help.

Did they…

  • Save you a considerable amount of time?
  • Help you out of a jam?
  • Work together with you to solve a problem?
  • Spend extra time helping you learn something new?

Remember that sometimes the help can come from someone you do not typically work with. For example, you may have contacted someone in another department for assistance.

Thank you for helping me yesterday by covering the call with the client when I needed to leave early. I appreciate you filling in, so the call didn't need to be rescheduled. You're a lifesaver!

Thank you for collaborating with me yesterday when I was stuck. Your ideas and insights helped me reach a better solution than I could have imagined. Thank you again for taking time out of your busy day to meet with me. 

Thank you so much for your help with the reporting system last week. I am grateful that you could stop what you were doing to come by my desk and show me the steps. Because of your training, I should be able to run the reports next time on my own. 

Thank you for helping me learn the new version of [program name]. Your updated tips-and-tricks document is an excellent reference. I am using it every day while I adjust to the changes. 

2. After You Receive a Raise

One of several reasons to thank your boss is after you receive a raise.

While you, as an employee, may feel entitled to an annual raise and not feel like you need to say thank you, remember that a raise is only guaranteed if written into your employment contract.

When writing thank-you notes for your raise, it's best to leave the amount or percentage out of your message. Your boss knows how much your raise was (or can find out). While you only intend for the boss to see your note, someone else who received a lesser amount may see it. You can spare hurt feelings and drama by leaving out the amount.

Thank you for the recent raise. I am excited about the increase and appreciate that my skills, contributions, and knowledge are valued. 

Thank you for the annual raise. I am glad that the company met its financial goals this year. I look forward to another successful year with [Company Name]. 

I appreciate the raise I received along with my performance review. I enjoy working with you and for [Company Name]. Thank you very much!

Thank you for the raise. I am grateful for the financial acknowledgment of my contributions to the team's success this year. I will continue doing all I can to help us grow the international accounts. 

3. After a Team Lunch

Team lunches can be fun but let's be honest–sometimes they are awkward, or you feel too busy for a longer than typical lunch. However, the lunch could help with bonding and getting to know newer team members.

One reason to consider writing a thank you note is because the boss, another teammate, or an assistant put in the time and effort to organize the lunch. And the company likely picked up the tab.

Your note doesn't need to be long or complicated. A short message will express your gratitude (or the note will help you to feel grateful if you didn't feel like going to a required lunch).

Thank you for the team lunch. I enjoyed getting to know others on the team. 

Thank you for organizing lunch for the team. The food was delicious. [Restaurant Name] was an excellent choice. 

The team lunch was fun today. Thank you for taking us out and giving us some time away from the office to socialize. 

Thank you for taking the time to have lunch with the team yesterday! Getting to know more about you was intriguing. I was surprised to learn that we both love [topic]. Feel free to stop by whenever you want to talk more about [topic].

Thank you for coordinating everyone's order for the luncheon on Friday. I was grateful to choose what I wanted instead of the usual catered buffet. And I appreciate the decision to bring the food into the office instead of going to a restaurant, as this saved us all the travel time, and we still were able to spend time visiting each other.

4. Just Before Leaving The Company or Changing Positions

Writing a thank you and farewell message to your coworkers, team, and boss will provide a positive interaction before transitioning to your next position.

When leaving for a new company or going to a different internal position, a goodbye thank-you message can leave a lasting, good impression to help you be remembered fondly. Your paths could cross again in the future!

You can also use the message to inform people of your last day. Optionally, you can include your contact information at the end of your message if you want to stay in touch if you are moving to a different company.

I enjoyed working with you and will miss you. Thank you for your teamwork during the past three years. And I will also miss our chats about [shared interest]. You've been a great friend and teammate.

As I leave [Company Name], thank you for your excellent leadership and for providing a fun team culture that was rewarding as the team solved problems and worked on projects. You are a fantastic boss!

My last day will be Friday. As of next week, I will be working in [another department name] as a [new job title]. I appreciate all of you! While on this team, I've increased my skills due to the mentoring provided by many of you.

Thank you for all the good times we shared. I enjoyed working with you on projects and our conversations about [topic]. I would love to stay in touch after I start my new job at [Company Name]. My phone number is 555-555-5555. 

5. Just Before The End of The Year

Writing thank-you notes to your coworkers and boss is a positive way to end the year. You can express your appreciation for them and spread some holiday cheer. The note could also summarize the year's accomplishments.

Your message can feel more generic than when you want to thank someone for something specific. But, of course, if you have something recent you can specifically mention, be sure to mention it in your note.

Thank you for all of your help this year. Enjoy the holiday season!

Thank you for being an awesome coworker. I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

You're a great boss. Thank you for your support and mentoring throughout the year. Happy Holidays! 

I wish you the best holiday season. Thank you for all that you do for the team and me. You're a spectacular boss. Also, I appreciate the extra half-day off on Friday. It's a great way to kick off our holiday vacations. 

We had a great year! Thank you for helping make our projects successful. The new sales exceeded expectations. Enjoy the holiday break. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

I enjoyed working with our team this year. Thank you for creating an excellent culture. Collaboration on projects and growth feels rewarding. I wish you Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

There are many situations where you can write thank you notes at work. These five examples are the tip of the iceberg.

Be intentional and look for other opportunities to thank your boss, coworkers, or other employees to spread gratitude, appreciation, and recognition at your workplace.

This article was produced by Wealth of Geeks.


Heidi Bender is the founder of Tons of Thanks, a website that helps people write thank-you notes by providing example thank-you messages, templates, and tips. When she’s not writing she enjoys spending time with her husband and their cats.