For over 9 years now, we’ve included a handwritten thank you note as a core element to what you receive in your orders. We’ve done this as an expression of our value “Express Gratitude”, and we’ve really enjoyed being able to write them, and we know you’ve enjoyed them, too.
It’s bittersweet to say that we’ve going to change this, and I wanted to take the time to explain why.
Goulet Thank You Note History
The first notes we ever wrote were all done by me, Brian Goulet, in a full A5 sheet of Clairefontaine Triomphe paper, personalized to each customer with what was ordered, and finished off with a wax seal. I signed around 1700 notes this way. Every day I was spending upwards of 2 hours signing these notes, and it was impeding other activities I was able to accomplish, such as packing orders, doing photography, shooting videos, or sourcing new products. I toiled over the notion of having to change them in any way, but faced with practicality, I did.
I stopped writing them all myself and recruited the help of other Goulet team members, and we wrote directly on the packing slip instead of a separate sheet. It made way more sense and overall was better for us and for you as our customers. I shot a video explaining my turmoil over the matter as I took this personalized element of service quite seriously.
We kept up this process for several years, having most of the notes written by our Customer Care team. We wrote a thank you message in a pen and ink from a team member and it felt personal. The challenge was that during higher volume times like the holidays and major product releases, the notes would be a bottleneck for our team and cause a lot of stress internally, and delay quick shipping.
We ultimately decided to change to a separate card with artwork our team members created. Having separate cards allowed us to sign during slower times and build up inventory of cards and completely solved the bottleneck issue. It was a compromise to not have the cards be personalized anymore, but the benefits outweighed the drawbacks. This allowed everyone in the company to sign notes, which had been unifying for our team, for a while at least.
Over time as we’ve grown, these notes were demanding more and more of our time, and have been coming at a higher opportunity cost. This past holiday season we had to spent a tremendous amount of time scheduling, organizing, and managing what is now a whole project of signing these cards. It’s gone from being something we have enjoyed doing to something that actually causes a bit of stress for our team, because we all have very important work we want to be doing to serve you in other ways.
We’ve been engaging in thoughtful debate as a team for the last 6 months about changing the cards, and we sent out a survey to our email list to gauge feedback. While we received a lot of affirmation of these cards, we also saw that there were many other ways you feel valued and connected to us, and the cards aren’t the only way to achieve this personal touch. So we’re making some changes for the sake of sustainability as we grow.
What we’re changing
The most noticeable change we’re making is to the cards themselves. You’ll no longer see a handwritten card in every order. We aren’t stopping them completely, but we are stopping the expectation to have them in each order. We just can’t keep that up anymore.
So what we’re doing instead is including a personal message from me and Rachel with all first-time orders, written in a Goulet broad nib (installed in an Edison Nouveau Premiere) with Noodler’s Liberty’s Elysium. We scanned and digitally reproduced these cards so it’s still our message and our handwriting (mostly Rachel’s, we both wrote out the message and hers looked better!). This will allow us to have more time for other improvements to your experience with our company.
If you still desire receiving a handwritten note, you can ask in your order comments and we’ll honor that, since we know some of your really love them!
But wait, there’s more!
Because we know there’s a collectibility aspect to the cards we’ve been doing, we wanted to come up with something else fun to include. We’ve gotten really nice die-cut vinyl waterproof stickers.
You’ll receive the blue Goulet ink splatter sticker in your first order with us (along with the thank you card). Then, in every repeat order, we’ll include a different sticker randomly in each order, and even take requests for particular stickers if you know you want a specific one. We’ll look to rotate these out every season, so we’ll keep them fresh and fun! We’ve started with these five designs inspired from past Monday Matchup artwork. You can share your photos of your Goulet stickers when you receive them using hashtag #StuckOnGoulet!
We’re still keeping our packer cards and Tootsie Pops in every order, too.
We’re so grateful for every order you place to support our team and company. We literally couldn’t do all we do without the orders you place. You vote with your dollars every day and the orders you place tell us if we’re serving you well. We’re honored to be able to work for you, and we are always looking for better ways to do that.
Thank you for all your support!
Brian & Rachel Goulet