Titles Make Me Crazy!

While skimming some LinkedIn postings recently, I encountered an author who was seriously title happy. After his name was ‘… MBA, BA, BS, NP, MPM.’

Wow – aren’t you impressed with his credentials! With an ‘MBA’, no need to include the BA & BS degrees. And while the ‘MBA, BA & BS’ are recognizable, ‘NP & MPM” aren’t. More confusing that impressive.

I also encountered an entrepreneur who introduced herself as ‘Founder, President & Chief Executive Officer’ of her company, which was obviously a sole proprietorship business. Necessary to list all three functions? I don’t think so.

She could simply have said ‘CEO’ instead. Something more imaginative would have been ‘Chief Marketing Officer’, ‘Chief Coaching Officer’ or ‘Chief Strategy Officer’, depending on the focus of her business. An even better option is to say I run a company called ______ that does ‘X’ for clients.’  ‘Run’ is an action verb and suggests ownership or leadership.’

So, what changes will you make to your business cards, signature blocks and elevator speeches? The message here with titles and professional designations is clear – Keep It Short & Simple and let accomplishments and professionalism impress others, not a string of letters or words.