It would be difficult to find practical instructions in any etiquette book for choosing and sending business sympathy cards. When a close personal friend loses a loved one, or when someone we have personally known dies and we want to reach out to that person’s grieving family, we act on instinct. For these personal expressions of sympathy, we phone and we visit, and we are often used to making a special trip to personally pick out a suitable sympathy card. Or, perhaps we write a personal note of some length. Or, maybe we just go directly to sending a floral arrangement or fruit basket.
When selecting business sympathy cards, however, we are preparing ahead of time to offer condolences to and about a variety of people with whom we may have only a passing acquaintance. We are also making a selection that will reflect upon our company and the many differing people affiliated with our company. And yet, the very reason for sending a card lets us know that a brusque, business-like style would be inappropriate for the situation.
What to do?! I suggest consideration of one of the two sympathy cards I’m about to mention. Both are of a very dignified size and quality. Both designs reflect simplicity and gentility, which are soothing elements in the expression of condolences.
Design #341AR, Sympathy Lilies Card, strikes a sensitive balance between formality and gentleness. Its embossed framing leaves a clean white margin. The hint of soft lavender in the frame is also used to add three-dimensional shadowing to the lilies. The graceful curling petals and leaves are deeply sculpted for, not only visual depth, but a tactile sense of comfort. The natural shades of green and muted yellow, with coral-colored anther on the stamen, provide an easy focus for weary eyes.
A tad more formal, design #376AY, In Sympathy Card, is softened with a flowing gold foil script. Set on creamy ecru matte-finish card stock, it has a subtly embossed fine double framing. A muted contrast of marbleized pearl rectangle backs the facial script, for a sense of greater depth. This is a very correct and dignified representation for your company’s expression of sympathy to business associates or clients.
In either design, your use of a simple verse that is not overdone or presumptuous, with your company name clearly imprinted below the verse, will be entirely proper and welcome. A handwritten salutation or very brief note and/or single personal signature will warm your sentiments when the situation seems appropriate.