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Career Coach: A Thank-You Note

In this month's "Career Coach," Pamela Kleibrink Thompson talks about how we can show our thanks and help our careers in the process.

Pamela Kleibrink Thompson.

November is the month in the United States when we celebrate Thanksgiving with family and friends by feasting. Let's remember to give thanks.

Recently I was about to feast at a restaurant and the waiter greeted us and, as usual, asked how we were. We replied that we were fine and then I added, "How are you today?" He answered, with a big smile on his face, "I'm doing great. I woke up this morning and I was still breathing." It got me thinking. We have a lot to be thankful for -- especially for the gift of life. Life is precious and we must seize the day and make it what we want it to be. We never know when we might not wake up, so we should work on our cherished dreams and make them a reality. Make the most of every day and work at doing what you love, or work towards accomplishing what you most desire.

I want to give thanks to AWN for giving me a forum to express myself every month in this column. And thanks to the readers who occasionally share their problems and successes.

I want to give thanks for the online forums where you can meet others who are as passionate about animation and art as you are and where you can get help and advice, no matter where you live or work. I want to thank those who share and help others.

I want to give thanks to all the teachers who share their expertise and passion, and learn from their students.

I want to give thanks to all the students who work hard at learning all they can about the field of animation and who will be the leaders in the industry in the future.

I want to thank all the people I've been able to meet. Thanks for all the friendships and relationships with people in the business, who have taught me some valuable lessons and who helped me in many ways they are unaware of.

I want to thank the writers of books and articles, who have saved others countless hours by sharing what they have learned.

I want to thank the founders and members of animation-related organizations who continue to foster animation and art. Organizations like ASIFA, Women in Animation, SIGGRAPH and the Visual Effects Society are all valuable resources to the community and provide countless opportunities for networking and career growth.

I want to give thanks to the people who continue to protect our freedoms so that we can pursue what we love to do.

I want to give thanks to those who work to change the world for the better. Everyone can make a difference, even by something as simple as smiling at a stranger or lending a hand to a neighbor who needs some extra help.

I want to thank those who are working on making their dreams come true, who have decided what's important and are focusing their energies on people and activities that bring them joy.

I want to celebrate Thanksgiving with the world, and encourage everyone to be kind to strangers and friends alike.

Think about those who have helped you this past year and throughout your life. Let them know you appreciate whatever they did for you. Take time to write and send a thank-you note. It could make someone's day.

Help others and you'll help yourself. Become a giving person. Sometimes just a smile or a word of encouragement can give someone a big boost. It doesn't take much to make someone's life better. And it could be your own.

Adopt an attitude of gratitude. Be positive in your dealings with others and yourself.

Never underestimate the power of a genuine thank you.

Keep saying "thank you" all year long. Send thank-you notes after every meeting and interview and build your relationships.

Smile, because you have plenty to be thankful for.

Pamela Kleibrink Thompson is a recruiter, hiring strategist, career coach and speaker, available for personal consultations and speaking engagements. She is currently recruiting for tools developers and senior technical directors for a feature film company on the West Coast and would love to hear from any experienced lighting TDs, shader writer TDs, and compositing TDs or tools developers. If you are interested in her professional services as a career coach, speaker, or recruiter, contact her at