Get the name right.

I may have a boring job that’s not tremendously important, but I do work in an office.  And despite how great my boss might be, and how much we can joke around, it’s still a professional environment.  As such, I expect the people who are communicating with me will act professionally.  In particular, any written communications including email should be carefully written.  All too often, this is nto the case, due to the informality of email as a medium.

In particular I’ve noticed other’s inability to type my name correctly.  True, my name has various common spellings, but that should not make any difference.  If you are responding to my email directly, you should be able to verify and re-type the name correctly.  If not, you should at least be able to copy and paste it into the reply.  Still, countless people mess it up.  There’s one ‘e’, people, and only one!  However, this slight spelling error doesn’t get to me like the range of errors perpetrated against me this morning.

Let’s use an example to illustrate.  Let’s say your name is Shawn Smyth.  It’s a pretty common name, with maybe a bit of unusual spelling, but still something most English speakers would be highly familar with.  So, someone writes an email to ‘dear Sean’.  Honest mistake, people make it all the time, even though your first name (spelled correctly) is embedded in your email address.  Fine, whatever, you ‘reply all’.

Then another person on the email list responds, mangling your last name into ‘Smith’.  Again, it’s an honest mistake, but really?  What can they mess up next (because you know, someone on this email list is going to make you want to hurt puppies soon)?

Next email: ‘Dear Stan Smith’.  Really?  That’s not even close.

C’mon people.  Get it together!

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1 Comment

  1. Alex said,

    July 24, 2008 at 1:03 pm

    I got an email from a student, who would’ve had to have looked up the address from something with my name next to it, that started ‘Hi Adam’. Not the best way to impress the guy grading your work.


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