I'm a summer intern (worked at a small tech startup in the Silicon Valley for about three months) and am planning on writing thank you notes to those who I closely worked with this summer (i.e. talked on a semi-daily basis about work).

I'm wondering, snail mail, leaving them on desks, or just sending personalized emails? The company culture is pretty casual (we wear jeans and t-shirts to work etc.).

edit: I'm thinking of sending these after my last day as a follow-up, after I've sent out a mass thank you email to everyone in my department. I'm also not planning to come back next summer since I've figured this is an industry I don't want to work in.

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    Somewhat related, although it covers interviews and not internships... emails vs. handwritten: workplace.stackexchange.com/questions/14054/… – SWalters - Reinstate Monica Aug 3 '17 at 21:50
  • Why don't you call them or even better speak them personally... I consider those things are better face to face. You could also buy them some sweets or something to give them (or leave in desk if no other option) – DarkCygnus Aug 3 '17 at 21:53
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    @GrayCygnus I'm thinking of sending this as a follow-up after I've already sent a mass thank you email on my last day. – jmoon Aug 3 '17 at 21:54

I think that's a very considerate idea. I think there's also something to be said for snail mailing thank-you notes. Of course, while that's the traditional, formal way of delivering thank-yous, it might be a little stuffy for the company's culture. If that's what your gut tells you, leave the notes on people's desks. I wouldn't don't do personalized emails, these should be hand written.


When I left my internships at PepsiCo and UPS, I did a mix of thank you's and small gifts.

If it was an email, each were personalized based on what I've learned from them and how they helped me become a better person and life in general. If I gave a gift and a typed note (my handwriting is atrocious) I would have left it at the equivalent to a front desk and entrusted them to deliver it to the recipient.

If you are going to give a gift, depending on your age, a bottle of wine might be appropriate. This was what I did for my university professors when I graduated. If not, chocolate or articles of clothings (like a tie for men or brooch for women). No need to be expensive, but thoughtful.

In general, receiving even just a note from interns is expected but not always done. I can guarantee you they they will remember the gesture and be thankful for it. Be personable, short, and kind, no need for long worded notes.

  • Smalls gifts could get expensive depending on how many OP has to give out. – Michael Aug 4 '17 at 2:28
  • @MichaelC. My budget was $200 total in most cases. A day's work. OP has discretion as to what and how much. – Frank FYC Aug 4 '17 at 3:24

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