What’s In A Name?

Photo Credit: Robert Couse-Baker, A Rose By Any Other Name…

 

I met a client the other day that surprised me with her name.
(Her name has been changed in this post, but the effect is still the same.)
She was in her twenties, has been married for a couple years. She said her husband’s name was Taylor Smith. I shook my head at that, and asked her to repeat herself. I looked at my assistant, and she was as surprised as I was.
Because the client’s name is Taylor Smith.

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I had never before met someone with the exact name as their spouse.
Now, she went on to tell us about her family, and that she was expecting a baby. I’m sorry, but the first thought that went through my mind was, “Please don’t name the baby Taylor.”

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What we call things can be so important. In a past post on maps, I addressed one aspect of this. I love to read, and I am writing now, and one thing I have discovered is that finding the right word can be one of the most difficult things when writing.

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With the right name or label, you can improve understanding and impact.
Does your team call you “boss”? Or are you a “leader”?
Do you have staff? Or employees? Or “team members”?
Now this can be taken to the other extreme, where you get too politically correct, and don’t call things like they are. Or give them incorrect names again. That is not what I am talking about.

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I like to think of myself as a leader and not a boss. My team has a great place to work, and not just a “job”. My Director of First Impressions is more than a receptionist.
Just be aware of labels you use, and think about the connotations.

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What is your vision? How can your language choices affect your vision and other’s perception of it?

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