It’s a pretty common misconception that only certain types of employees need a business card. The best companies I worked for had “Company Cards” at the reception desk. A “Company Card” is a general card with basic info about the business, but no names. Misconception number two is that if you are between jobs that you don’t need a business card. I really disagree with that. I’ve been carrying business cards since I was new college grad. Looking for work means networking, jobs fairs, interviews and follow-ups. You need a business card because you should have something to hand people at events, to leave behind after a great interview. Business cards are essentially, tiny ads all about you!
Here are my top 5 pieces of information you need on your business card–even if you are just looking for a job!
Obviously, People need to know who you are and how to spell your name. Sometimes seeing a persons name in print can help with pronunciation and can aide in helping you get and stay remembered. What I love is the client I had that put both his full name and his nickname on his card. It’s a really smart move. For example, if your name is Michael, but everyone has always called you Mike. It makes sense to include it on your card, it saves you from having to let everyone know what you really like to be called. For those interested–yes, I’ve seen people put nicknames like “Buddy” and “Skipper” on business cards, but please keep it professional!
Keep it Short and Acronym free. Industry specific acronyms and jargon are great–if you only talk to people in the same industry. Honestly, if you are a big networker the people you meet won’t be in your industry and won’t know the names of your specialty software or technical terms and the like. On a side note, if you are looking for a job, put your desired or prospective job title on your card and be ready to back up the reasons why you would be great at it,when asked. Job seekers should also be networking hard. As my friend put it to me once, If you go to this event with 150 people at it…that’s a 149 people who might hire you!
Here’s one for you out of the “experience” file. When I’m designing a business for a client, I will list a their email however they wish it to appear on their business card. However, I’ve spoken with more than one HR professional and they all recommend that job seekers use an email address with your name on it somewhere. Companies should have an email address with their business name behind the “at” symbol. I admit that I haven’t used this piece of advice yet (no one is perfect), but if you ever need to find me I’m Purple Rose Graphics@gmail.com.
Social Networking Info
This is a great way to grow your followers, fans, likers, and friends-on-the-web. It tells people where they can get more information about you or your company in an easy to manage, more relaxed atmosphere. (sidenote: Keep those pages clean and professional, you never know who will see them!)
Website or Portfolio Link
Whether you work for a company, for yourself, or are in between career steps, it is important to have a place where your prospects can see your work. Start a blog, an e-commerce shop, an online portfolio or a website to showcase what you can do and why you are the best for the job.
Now that you know what to put on your business card, it’s time to make one! If you need help, contact me. I’d be happy to help.