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April 24, 2019


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Thank you, Lynn. It is very useful, as always.

Bart Rosenberg

I was taught that the greeting in a business letter was followed by a colon, which was formal and respectful. These examples use commas, which were for communications to familiar friends and relatives. Have we become less formal and more chummy? Is there a rule as the German Sie vs. du? The ultra friendly greetings used in email make my eyes burn.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Camilla, thanks for your thoughtful comment. You are welcome!


Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hi Bart,

Good point. Normally a colon follows the salutation in a business letter. For thank-you notes, however, the tone is different, and the relationship-building purpose merits the comma, which is friendlier.

A colon would be correct, but it would be more formal, as you said.

"Hi" and "Hello" as greetings are also relationship builders.

I've written a lot about greetings here:

Nice to hear from you, as always.



Thank you
I study business major (4 grade)
It’s helpful

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Hasan, you are welcome.


Gilda Bonanno

Thank you! This is a valuable and very helpful article. I've shared it with Career Services at my alma mater, Marist College, so they can use it as a resource with their students.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

Thank you, Gilda. I appreciate your passing this information on. It's surprising how many people--including students--don't think about this step in the hiring process.


Sanjay Patil

Thank you, Lynn. you have been giving excellent tips always.

Lynn Gaertner-Johnston

You are welcome, Sanjay!


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