167: Consider a typewriter for your thank you notes - with Mary Beth Klatt

About Mary Beth Klatt

Mary Beth Klatt is a writer with a specialty in writing about real estate, design, and historic preservation. She has been published in the Wall Street Journal, the Chicago Tribune, the Christian Science Monitor and other publications. She is also the host of the Mid-Century Modern Show, a podcast that focuses on all aspects of modernism as it relates to design, residential and commercial real estate and fashion. She's also using a typewriter for the second draft of her murder mystery novel.


What’s the appeal of typing thank you notes to your podcast guests?

“…I really hit the keys and that's what you want to do is to really connect with your keys. And I don’t know, I think it just makes the whole experience of writing just more three-dimensional.


Why are typewriters so popular now? Is it the “Tom Hanks” effect?

“Tom Hanks is hugely passionate about typewriters. He collects them all over the world. He, um, yeah, he's very vocal and he shares about all these typewriters and that has had the, uh, the rollover effect of actually affecting the sales…”


How can business professionals incorporate more use of typewriters in their work-life besides typing thank you notes?

“When you're having a writing freeze as something you're writing on your laptop, take a break, get on your typewriter and just write whatever you were trying to do on the laptop and just, you know, see if that kind of breaks through your writing’s dry spell.”


Can you share with me your most successful or favorite networking story/experience that you’ve had?

“But then maybe a couple months later I got a handwritten note from my nephew's wife and I almost burst into tears. I mean, it was so thoughtful and she kind of quoted back the card and I just felt so touched. Like I made a difference in the world.”


How do you stay in front of or best nurture your network community?

“I think those thank you notes are important. And you know what, I talked about typing but it doesn't have to be typed. I just think it needs to be personal.”


What advice do you have for the professional on growing their network?

“…focus on one thing and then do it.”


Digital networking or traditional networking?

“…at the end of the day, we're still human beings with a need to connect with other human beings, face to face talking. And, um, I, I think you need both.”


If you could go back 20 years, what would you tell yourself to do more, or less, of regarding your career?

“I think my younger self would really say focus on the result. You know, what do you want to say, you know, you've done at the end of your life…”


We’ve all heard of the 6 degrees of separation… Now, who would be the one person you’d love to connect with, and do you think you could do it within the 6th degree?

“I've been talking about Tom Hanks the whole show. Actually, I have had this idea that I want to, and he's very good about this apparently, you can send Tom Hanks a note…”


What book are you reading right now?

“You know, you've got to read your genre, the murder mystery genre. But I'm also because I, uh, my, my protagonist is a nun, I'm also reading a lot of books that have religious elements right now…”


Any final words of advice for our listeners?

“Just focus on one way to really connect with people and go for it. And the payoff may not occur right away. You know, it may be weeks, months, years, but just go for it. Make your mark and just um, you know, personalize it.”


You can get in contact with Mary Beth Klatt at:

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