Thank you so much, Paris, for the time and effort you put into writing this, sending this, and being so thoughtful with your words. 

I struggle with email. I get so many a day from strangers, friends, and colleagues. I don’t get to answer all of them because, if I did, I would be a professional emailer and not actually getting things done. It’s also hard for me because being a quote-unquote innovative doctor in a very, very traditional and anti-creative industry, I tend to stick out. So the med students in America, undergrads in Indiana, nurses in Australia, doctors in India, etc., read something about me, get inspired, and fire off an email to me. It’s very inspiring and one of the main reasons why I truly love what I do. But, managing these communications could literally be my full time job. And don’t get me started on twitter and DM’ing…really? Making communication so easy is the biggest trick we’re playing on ourselves nowadays. At the end of the day and our lives, we’ve still got only a finite amount of time. I’d like to spend more of that time doing things, than talking about doing things. But that’s another story…

However, it is very, very rare, on the order of once or twice a year, that I get a handwritten note in the mail. And when I do, I pause. Why? Because it’s unexpected and the person understands that. It stands out. It also took a special kind of time. 

I spoke at PopTech! back in 2008 and I remember Marian Bantjes say something very interesting. If people see something and the viewer has this impression that it must have taken a ton of time to make, the value of that thing skyrockets. That’s Marian’s work above.

When I see an email, it’s nice. But when I see a handwritten note, I am acutely aware of the time and effort it took someone to write and send that, and it makes me pause. This is also the reason why we here at Sherpaa don’t send out cold emails. We send handwritten cards saying something nice about the company/potential client along with a real live bonzai tree. And about a week after we do that, we send an email reminding the recipient to water the bonzai tree and that’s when we ask for a meeting to discuss Sherpaa. Time, effort, thoughtfulness, and a bit of the unexpected make people pause. 

Thank you, again Paris.