As I have noted on many other occasions (and will continue to do so), everything you say, quote, type, publish, email, etc. brands you. Of course, many of us will have email addresses related to an employer, but all of us should also have a personal email address for correspondence outside of work. Your email address is no less important than that post you just released to the world on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ or the latest Social Media application that was just launched as I type this sentence.
Here are some quick recommendations, presented for your consideration:
Don’t be cute.
I never cease to be amazed by the incredibly clever, iconoclastic, cryptic, even mildly profane email addresses that polished and professional individuals use, to their own detriment. Why cheapen that carefully crafted resume or the LinkedIn profile that you labored over so long with an email address that starts with “deadhead” or “funky.monkey?” (Don’t laugh too loudly, I have seen these and much, much worse!) To quote an earlier and favorite blog of mine, “you should never say quote-unquote, only quote-end quote,” since you cannot take back something you have spoken or written. In case you are interested, here’s the link to that blog as well: https://bdavismcdp.wordpress.com/2012/02/09/why-you-should-never-say-quote-unquote.
Don’t broadcast information you need not share.
Believe it or not, I have learned things about people that I have no right to know based on their email addresses. Dates of birth, names of family members, strange hobbies, etc. are often broadcast unwittingly within those few letters and numbers that make up one’s email address. The best way to “brand” yourself in that email handle is with some kind of professional variation of your name – no more, no less.
Don’t cheapen your brand.
With all due respect to all of the free email programs out there, an email that ends with a suffix like “aol.com” brings flashbacks of the annoying sound of a dial-up modem followed by a sing-song voice enunciating that hackneyed phrase “You’ve got mail!” At the very least you should consider employing a more professional or current email program, or investigate purchasing your own personal domain to add another level of credibility to your “handle.” There are any number of services out there that offer this at reasonable rates.
I’ll close this blog with the classic catch-phrase of Chester Gould’s crime fighter Dick Tracy: “Six-two and even, over and out!”