What’s In A Name?

Any Shakespeare fans out there? You’ve hear this phrase before, but did you know it is from a piece of classic literature?

“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose by any other name would still smell as sweet.”

This is a lovely sentiment, and when it comes a person’s given name it’s probably true. For the most part, we can’t control the names given to us by our parents. Sure, you could change it or go by a nickname, but your name is your name, and it’s part of who you are.

The same cannot be said of your email address. Maybe it’s because I’m just old and grumpy, but I think if you are going to go out into the professional job market and look for professional job, you should take the ten minutes that are required to set up a professional sounding email address.

As an HR person I see lots of emails and resumes, and if Shakespeare is right, it shouldn’t matter; but I have trouble sending a job offer to kitten42@hotmail.com. I have a friend whose high school nickname was Pammy-Cakes. That makes a great personal email address for her – or for Facebook – but not a resume. Does it help or hurt if you apply for job with the email LovesToCook14 or GolfAddict27?  Unless you are applying to be a cook or golf pro, I suggest it hurts.

Set up an email address that is a variant of your name like bob.smith, bsmith2014, robert.m.smith, whatever. You may need a use a number that makes it unique (there are lots of Bob Smiths) but don’t use your birth year- they don’t need to know how old you are.

I’ve written before about the importance of a first impression. Don’t let that impression be marred because the recruiter’s gets an email from IHateWork@gmail.com.

BTW – The quote is from Romeo and Juliet, Act II, Scene II – Juliet says this to Romeo suggesting that she has no problem with him being a Montague when she’s a Capulet. Now you have some culture in your job search. 🙂

For more details about I’m Fired?!? A Business Fable about the Challenges of Losing One Job and Finding Another, click here.


One Comment on “What’s In A Name?”

  1. […] (mailing address, email address, phone number) on both documents. Make sure you are using a professional email address like bob.smith@gmail.com instead of […]


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