My name is as my business card or LinkedIn profile states.

Those who have worked with me, went to school with me, or are friends or family have leeway in how they address me.  They’ve earned it by going through things with me or just by putting up with me.

If you are a vendor making a cold or warm contact via e-mail, you can either use a formal address using my last name, or you may be bold and use my first name as on my business card, LinkedIn profile, or as spelled out in my e-mail address.  Note that a difference between the two may indicate specific preferences about how I prefer to be addressed.

If you use a nickname that is never used in any of my contact information, you’re making some big assumptions about the familiarity of our relationship.  They’re also called “incorrect assumptions”.

The overhead speaker / paging system

In an office environment where everyone has cubes with their own phones, cell phones, and laptops, how often is there a reason for someone to be paged?  I’d imagine in the case of life or death, or birth, use of the paging system is valid.  For all other purposes, if it’s going to be moderately important that you be reached in a timely manner when away from your desk, the person likely to need to reach you should have your cell phone on you.

More annoying still is the use of the paging system to make announcements constantly. I may not be at the XYZ event because I don’t care about it.  Just a thought.  I really don’t want to have an announcement made unless you would feel comfortable dialing 911 in response to whatever you’re making an announcement about.

Would you use the fire alarm if there were doughnuts in the break room?  Okay, maybe I’ll make an exception for doughnuts.

Bookmark: Get rid of bad business jargon with unsuck-it

Is your language getting filled with business jargon and completely unnecessary business euphemisms?

Go to Unsuck It.

On the main page you can search for suitable replacement terms that are more direct and in plain english, or your can browse the word list if you want to create your own game of buzzword bingo.

Just a warning: browsing the word list may have you shaking your head a lot or even smacking your forehead in disgust at how convoluted business language can be.

Oh the noise… Cell phone ringers

Ah, I remember when a digital beep pattern was the norm for the cell phone. Then, cell phones started coming with preprogrammed “tunes”, that were just a variation on that beep pattern.

At various points in time, using a voice recording, midi, or music file for a phone ringer were all novel. Occasionally, some fun or catchy sound or song comes along, and we are tempted to use it as our full time ringer. Unfortunately, the company is not paying you to amuse or entertain us, the coworkers. Maybe if you’re a comedian, clown, musician, you entertain patrons or clients–but I doubt those people resort to ringtones.

Besides, “Gold Digger” and “I Kissed a Girl” ringtones make things awkward. Use a plain ringer and turn it down or put it on vibrate. Otherwise, I’m going to have to go Office Space on your phone.