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"The deepest craving of human nature is the need to be appreciated," philosopher William James once remarked. If someone demonstrates appreciation for you by planning your retirement party, show her that the sentiment is mutual with a well-written, formal thank-you note. With this small gesture, you will not only acknowledge the organizer's effort, but also create a memento for her to remember the occasion.
Make a short list of moments at the party that particularly amused you or made you happy. It might include the way you felt when you walked in the door, when you saw that many people care about you or a special moment you shared with one guest.
Open the note with a straightforward comment thanking the note's recipient for the party. The entire first paragraph need only be that one sentence. "Thank you for the wonderful party" will do.
Draw from your list to write the next paragraph. Describe how those special moments made you feel and list them specifically. For example, "I was so happy to see Jane Jones there, even though she left the company 10 years ago." List one or two other moments. Mentioning specific moments sincerely suggests that the party made you feel good and left you with happy memories, which is exactly what someone who plans an event like this wants.
Acknowledge the effort and thoughtfulness that went into planning a party that pleased you so much. Be sure to mention the note's recipient by name. "I know you went to a great deal of trouble to plan this party, Dan, and I want you to know that I noticed. It couldn't have been a more meaningful evening."
Conclude the note with one sentence that reiterates your gratitude, and sign it.
- John Lund/Drew Kelly/Blend Images/Getty Images