Attention to Detail that Makes You Shine

Robert Terson

I recently received an email thank-you note from a colleague for publicizing a program of his. It was a well-crafted, warm note; it was also, I believe, the identical note that he sent to a number of people. Why do I think that? Because there was nothing in it that personalized it to me: it wasn’t addressed to me, nor did he put anything in the note that could not have gone out to a 1000 people. My guess is he was in a hurry and wanted to accomplish his task as quickly as possible, with as little effort as he could get away with. You know: create the note and then, on the fly, paste it into as many emails as he needed to send out. One two three send…one two three send…one two three send…

I, too, have created emails I wanted to send out to a number of people, but I normally take the time to personalize each email by addressing it to the specific individual, using his/her name somewhere in the body of the text, and adding something uniquely relative to that person. Yes, it takes extra time to do it that way, but I believe it’s worth the effort. An attention to detail that makes the sender shine, and the recipient doesn’t come away feeling like he’s just received a form of bulk mail.

Like a number of my colleagues who write about sales, I’m asked to read and review a lot of sales books. I always read the entire book before writing my review. I want to know what I’m talking about; I want to do the book justice; I want to give the author and reader my best effort. Alas, not everyone does it this way. I’ve read a number of reviews that made me wonder if the reviewer had even bothered to read the book; in too many cases, I suspected he/she hadn’t. It was an “obligation” that needed to be addressed, a chore, not something tackled with great enthusiasm.

The culprit in the two examples I’ve proffered is time. Everyone is in such a damn hurry to get it “all” accomplished, and often there just isn’t enough time to do that properly, so corners are cut, a half-hearted effort replaces the AAA effort the email-recipient/author would have preferred.

My late father used to say, “If you’re going to do something, you might as well do it right, do it as well as you possibly can.” Right! And the kicker is, if you give it the AAA effort you’re capable of, if you pay attention to the details, you’ll shine in the eyes of the people you’re trying to reach. Otherwise, they may be scratching their heads and wondering about you. It boils down to How do you want to be seen: the guy in a hurry who’s rushing through it, or the guy who truly cares?

It’s your choice.


On December 21st, I published a guest post from my friend Dave Brock entitled “Making A Difference In 2013: Help 1000’s Get Access To Clean Water!” I hope you’ll take a moment to reread it:′s-get-access-to-clean-water-by-david-brock/ I know you’re inundated by charity requests this time of year, but I hope you’ll pay attention to this one, even if it’s only for a few dollars, because it’s a great cause and it means a lot to a terrific guy–Dave Brock. Here’s a post Dave put up recently on his site; I hope you’ll take a moment to read it, too: Again, even if it’s only a few dollars–it’ll mean a lot!