Why We (Still) Love Handwriting Your Gift Notes
From the hearts behind the hands behind the handwriting.
Gift notes spark imagination. Not just for you, clever writer, now looking for the words to accompany the gift you just dragged into your digital shopping cart. They spark imagination for us as well.
In the past when I’ve written a gift note on some online platform, I’ve had a very specific person in mind who will be reading it/assembling the gift. His name, coincidentally, is also Zach-- he’s tall and slouching, wears steel-toed work boots, and packs orders with ear buds nestled deep in his cranium, in order to drown out the existential humdrum. All he cares about is that sweet release of punching out at 4:57 pm. He does not give a single frick (can I say that on here?).
This person is completely imaginary, but helps me feel like I can write in a vacuum. I’m sorry/happy to tell you that is not the reality at Batch. Like Sam wrote in the Our Story feature, ours is a story of connection. Ideas are welcome. The people that work here are a community. Not a family, but a community.
What that means is that we dream together. And not just about big picture stuff, like the future of the company or some innovative crinkle solution, but little stuff--like Mindbenders, 20 Questions, and of course, the notes we get to write by hand. One of my favorite parts of working at the warehouse is writing an interesting note for the customer, and reading it out loud to everyone. Jean looks up from her desk to listen. RJ wanders over. Mark takes a pause. All of this comes back to connection. We’re honored to be given this odd little snippet of a stranger’s life.
I’ll give you an example. One of the notes we received this week said so much, with so little.
“Happy Pride Month! I’m very proud to be your mom. Love you!”
This warehouse of fierce yet sensitive gift-packers was gushing. Immediately we’re collectively picturing a mother whose love is unconditional and whose acceptance is gift-worthy. Even from a distance, it feels like we can celebrate this parental success story. It’s impossible for us not to be empathetic. We know the gift we’re packing probably means a lot to the one receiving it.
I love that Batch is a place where we can pause and recognize the humanity behind what we do. It’s very easy for shipping online retail to feel robotic, but moments like this help remind us that it’s not about product, it’s about gratitude. So while I’d love to tell you that we don’t read the notes, and that we mindlessly hand write whatever the printer spits out, that’s not the reality. We’ve got too much imagination for that. You’re giving a gift to someone you care about. And we love that you can trust us to be the middleman.
[Main photo credit to Erica Penley. Photo above, Zach Anderson]