It is a natural reaction to avoid anything to do with death or funerals. The unfortunate result is that we are often unprepared and overwhelmed with the proper approach to take when a colleague, business associate or co-worker has a sudden loss in their family. The first step should be to send a sympathy card. Sympathy cards offer an appropriate sign that you are sensitive to the person’s loss.
When we think about a loss of a loved one, we remember the people we received sympathy cards from. Business associates will certainly feel the same way. It seems a prudent practice to be prepared for the possibility that business sympathy cards would be needed at any given time. The world is becoming a smaller place and businesses are no longer behaving in a cold and detached manner. The trend toward a warmer approach has shown that people respond better when the businesses they deal with care about them.
There is no reason to limit your involvement to a sympathy card. When my father-in-law passed away, there were many people who came to the wake that were business associates. I cannot tell you how that impressed and comforted my mother-in-law. The capacity to show sympathy is not something to be underestimated.
When we are vulnerable all kindness is appreciated. Many times we ask ourselves what should we do. What are the proper words to say? Should we send a card or send flowers or visit. Ask yourself what would you like if you lost a loved one and you will have your answer. A flower, a card or a visit encourages us to remember we are not alone in our grief. Who among us would not rather do business with people who are caring and thoughtful? Keeping a supply of business sympathy cards will help prepare you to express that caring to others.