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Be Thankful for Your Vendors by Expressing Appreciation

4 min read
Featured Image

Happy Thanksgiving fellow third-party risk management pros! Before you gather around the table with family and friends, take a moment to think about how much we should appreciate our most special vendors… those who push us to our limits and put us through our paces!

Yes, you heard me right!

Imagine how boring it would be if you didn’t have to chase after due diligence documents that are more elusive than Bigfoot. Or what about those invoices that are so convoluted you feel like a WWII code breaker when you finally figure them out? And who needs football when you can bet on whether or not a vendor will return your call? Let’s not forget about the heart-pounding thrill of discovering vendor issues during our much-needed time off – without them we might actually fall into a turkey induced coma. So, let's raise a glass (of lumpy gravy) to all the vendors out there that keep us on our toes and test our mettle.

All fun and silliness aside, working with some vendors can sometimes feel like a Thanksgiving dinner gone awry – you're left with a mess to clean up and a strong urge to throw everything out an open window.

Still, the reality is that without vendors many organizations wouldn't be able to provide the level or type of services that customers expect today.  

Even though the bad apples tend to attract attention, it's more important to appreciate vendors who quietly do what's asked of them, are reliable, and meet your requirements. We would be remiss if we didn’t acknowledge vendors who have become trusted partners, provide innovative solutions, and help us grow.

5 Vendor Types That Deserve Your Appreciation and Your Thanks

  • The Stalwart: With years of experience and unwavering commitment, this vendor has earned a reputation for being reliable, trustworthy, and consistent. Requests are answered promptly, the work product is organized, and quality is top notch. When you work with this vendor, you can be sure that you’re in good hands. They’ll always go above and beyond to deliver the best service and products possible.
  • The Collaborator: These vendors are more than willing to work together with your organization to discover innovative solutions for complex problems. They might offer their expertise, funding, or other resources to help identify or develop the right product or service for your organization. Additionally, they’re adept at sharing the spotlight because they know great partnerships can yield new products and higher profits.
  • The Mentor: When encountering a less knowledgeable employee from your organization, these vendors are always willing to provide assistance with training and education. They can help explain complex products and services or the ins and outs of new technology. It's clear to these vendors that knowledgeable employees are better equipped to make informed decisions, which ultimately contributes to the growth of your organization. Both sides of the business relationship benefit from this added value.
  • The Guardian: These vendors prioritize your business and your organization's reputation. They actively seek opportunities to enhance processes, expand service options, or reduce costs. Data protection and privacy are of utmost importance to them. They understand that safeguarding the interests of their customers fosters loyalty, which in turn leads to more opportunities.
  • The Confidant: Working closely with an organization often means accessing insider knowledge about their strategic initiatives or developing products. These vendors don’t take your trust for granted and make sure to keep your business just that – your business. They are very particular about helping clients achieve their objectives while maintaining confidentiality.

thankful vendors expressing appreciation

How To Express Appreciation to Your Vendors

When you have vendors that not only meet all your requirements, but add value to your organization, it's important to show appreciation.

Here are some ways to say thank you for a job well done:

  • Just say it. Maintaining a positive relationship with vendors who provide value to your organization is essential. One way to do this is by expressing gratitude frequently. Good vendors understand that meeting your requirements is part of their job, but a sincere "thank you" can go a long way in building a solid partnership and showing appreciation for their efforts. 
  • Speak highly of them to other organizations. Expressing sincere admiration and positive feedback about your vendor to other organizations, when appropriate, can be beneficial. It also helps build a strong reputation and credibility for your vendor in the industry.
  • Provide a formal reference. As an existing customer, your organization has a wealth of knowledge and understanding about the products or services provided by your vendor. This knowledge can be shared as a reference to potential clients of the vendor, highlighting the benefits and value that can be gained from partnering with them. Your organization's endorsement can go a long way in building trust and confidence with prospective clients.
  • Write a note to their executive leadership team. Compose a detailed message to the vendor’s executive leadership team expressing a positive experience you've had with them. Be sure to elaborate on the specific aspects of the vendor's performance that impressed you and explain what makes them stand out from other vendors.
  • Give them more business. One of the best ways to show your appreciation to a vendor is by considering them for additional business. By entrusting them with more projects or purchases, you’re not only acknowledging their good work, but also establishing a stronger relationship with them. This can lead to more personalized service, better pricing, and ultimately, a more successful partnership. Remember, when it comes to building a long-lasting business relationship, loyalty goes both ways.
  • Consider giving them an award. Many organizations have a practice of acknowledging outstanding vendors by conducting an annual awards program. Such programs bestow recognition on vendors who have performed exceptionally well, and the winners are presented with trophies or other awards that the vendors can proudly display.

No matter which way you choose to say thank you, let your valued vendors know you appreciate them. Not only do they deserve it, but everyone needs a bit of appreciation once in a while. Trust me, a little gratitude can go a long way in cementing a strong relationship with your vendors. And who knows? It might even take your mind off that one vendor who’s been making you want to pull your hair out, or worse, face plant into the pumpkin pie.

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