In John Maxwell’s book, Everyone Communicates, Few Connect, he makes the point that…
“Connecting is the ability to identify with people and relate to them in a way that increases your influence with them.”
One of the most important ways we communicate with others is by our job title or job description. It’s how we communicate who we are. This has become increasingly important with social media and entrepreneurs. When people look us up on the web or take one of our business cards they expect a title or job description of some sort. When they look us up on Twitter, they expect a few words of description about who we are and what we do.
Here are a few of the descriptions that some of my Twitter contacts use…
Author, Constructive Heretic, Pragmatist, Musician, Wife, Mom, Editor-In-Chief. Intellectual Adventurer, Bibliophile, Word Nerd, Brand Strategist, Leadership Trainer, Proud Dad, Workplace/Life Coach, Sports Nut, Father, Grandfather, Husband….
While having a constructive title is important, having one that makes unsubstantiated claims might be a problem. Beth Braccio Hering, in a great article for Career Builder, recommends that you look for words that “do not pass the ‘So what, anybody can make that claim’ test, and leave them off your resume or job title.
She sites words like…
are overused and become meaningless to prospective employers or clients. Instead she recommends using action verbs like…
She explains that verbs project the image of someone who has the background and initiative to get things done.
So when we are creating a title for our blog, Facebook page, Google Plus account, or resume, it might be a good idea to use a little creativity, decisive action verbs, and some other descriptors such as “on time,” and “under budget.”
We certainly don’t want to label ourselves as a Social Media Expert… at least not to Peter Shankman, who said in a very poignant blog post …
No business in the world should want a “Social Media Expert” on their team. They shouldn’t want a guru, rock-star, or savant, either. If you have a “Social Media Expert” on your payroll, you’re wasting your money.
Being an expert in Social Media is like being an expert at taking the bread out of the refrigerator. You might be the best bread-taker-outer in the world, but you know what? The goal is to make an amazing sandwich, and you can’t do that if all you’ve done in your life is taken the bread out of the fridge.
Social Media is just another facet of marketing and customer service. Say it with me. Repeat it until you know it by heart. Bind it as a sign upon your hands and upon thy gates. Social Media, by itself, will not help you.
Titles are really important. They communicate in just a few seconds, who we are, what we are interested in, and if we should be trusted. Make yours a good one.
Question: What descriptive terms do you use in your job title?