I wrote in my last note about the importance of rituals in an organization. I got some great feedback on the topic, and I was impressed by some of the rituals that you shared with us.  Thank you! 

Today I want to talk about the power of gratitude. After all, ‘tis the season right? Now, lots of folks have chimed in on the value of living a life of gratitude and how it leads to a more contented and fulfilled life experience. I agree wholeheartedly with that perspective. With that said, however, I want to talk about the importance of sharing your gratitude with those in your life that matter. Specifically, the importance for organizations to express their thanks to their customers and stakeholders.

While this seems like a no brainer, it often gets lost in the day-to-day operational excess we all deal with. More often than not, I think organizations mistake effort and energy through service as their expression of gratitude – for their members, customers, employees, and beyond. If you tend to do this, don’t worry, you’re not alone. We’re guilty of it too!  

That said, I have learned the power of expressed gratitude through my habit of writing handwritten thank you notes. As the years have gone by, I have been remarkably surprised at how powerful of a tool this has become. As the personal touch fades in the day and age of digital dominance, the simple gesture of writing down your thanks is a truly impactful gift. I wish I could write a thank you note to each and every one of our stakeholders, but I can’t, and most likely, neither can you. But my approach has been to look for pockets, key moments, and real interactions to simply say thank you to my constituency…and I have found it to be extremely rewarding.

In that spirit, I’d like to start a new tradition of publishing a thank you blog post leading into the day of Thanksgiving. (Yes, it’s digital, but it will have to do). So here goes…

To our customers whom we affectionately refer to as “The MemberClicks Nation,” I want you to know how personally thankful I am for your trust in MemberClicks to serve your organization in the pursuit of its mission. It means the world to us. Over the years, I have developed many personal relationships that I truly cherish. Thank you to Marlis Korber and the SBI Management Team for partnering with us so many years ago and growing with us together. Thank you to Leslie McGill at the California Chiefs of Police for always being a loud cheerleader, even when you didn’t feel like cheering. Thank you to all of our former WebLink (now Atlas) customers for your loyalty and willingness to create a new relationship with us over the last two years. And a special call out to the folks that have served on our Advisory Boards. Without you, we wouldn’t be where we are today. 

I also want to express my deep gratitude for the association and chamber communities at large.  You are fighting the good fight, and stitch by stitch, you are making the fabric of America stronger. That’s awesome. 

I feel so blessed to get to work with people like Greg Melia, who understand just how important associations and chambers are. I would be remiss not to thank you, Wendy Kavanaugh, for working to make the Georgia association community one to be admired. Or folks like Lowell Applebaum, who work so hard to make the association community better for all of us. 

To ASAE, I want you to know how thankful I am that ASAE exists and puts its heart and soul into strengthening the association community. This year, we partnered with the AMC Institute, an organization that has been so good to MemberClicks and even better for AMCs. AMCI, thank you. The same gratitude holds true for our partners at ACCE and NACP, who have welcomed MemberClicks with open arms into the chamber community. We are humbled to work alongside you.

There are so many more that I want to thank and I will over time as I have learned the importance of that expression. So, I encourage all of you, as you push to get everything done over the next few days, to simply pause and find a pocket of time to express your thanks to the folks you serve. I promise you, it will make their day.  

Thank you!

(Mark Sedgley, President and CEO of MemberClicks)