In the past month I have had three Thank You “notes” emailed to me as a single-slide PowerPoint presentation.
Have you ever received a PowerPoint “Thank You” or have you created one?
If so, why did you choose to use PowerPoint as the means for expressing
your thanks and/or how did you feel getting a file as thanks?
These PowerPoint “Thank Yous” — all from different people of differing
ages and varied backgrounds and unique cultural dedications — are
standard run-of-the-mill “socially required” prose placed in a basic
PowerPoint template. There is no unique human thought or basic emotion
included in the file. I find those PowerPoint presentations colder than
a simple email saying “thanks.”
I was raised with the idea if someone did you a favor that pressed
their time your way you were required to send them a handwritten Thank
You Card — on paper! — explaining how much you appreciated the favor.
You had to be specific and engaging and charming in expressing your
thanks. The card was then placed in an envelope with a handwritten
address, stamped and mailed to the recipient through the United States
Postal Service for hand delivery.
It is rare today to receive any sort of Thank You — be it electronic
or paper — when you do a favor for someone. I am uncertain if the
reason for that lack of formally expressed gratitude is a growing tide
against manners or if it is just a result of the continued compression
of time into space where it is assumed by both parties if you do
someone a favor they are grateful by default even though they never
directly share their thanks.
You will, however, hear from them in every possible way — via email,
Pony Express, voice mail, Morse code, Western Union, carrier pigeon,
newspaper advertisement, FedEx Early AM delivery, sky-writing, poisoned
dart, attack dog or Registered letter — if they are in any way
displeased with your favor.