Lara Nieberding

The Purple Lara

Memorable name…

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Who recommended: Lynne Waymon

What I am reading: Make Your Contacts Count (Networking Know-How For Business and Career Success) by Anne Baber and Lynne Waymon

Where in the book: page 87

Why I am reading: Learning how to network. Cause believe me, I have no CLUE!

Which quote: “Teach Your Name.”

How this quote adjusted my thinking:

Recently, I was at a networking event.  There was a unique situation.  There were several of us with a similar root name.  Even though we had name tags on, I wanted to give my new found networking skills a whirl.

The first technique I tried was “Give ’em a double dip.”  When people read my name on a name tag their brain pauses trying to figure out how to pronounce it.  So this time, I said “Lara….Lara Nieberding.”

Now that they are trying to associate the spelling with the sounding, I tried “Separate and Articulate.”  In the example above, I said my first name as it should roll off the tongue, “Lara” then I paused.  I repeated my first name “Law R uh” with articulation and then stated my last name.  I am not branding my name as my business so I made a choice to deemphasize my last name.

Do you watch NBC’s hit show “The Office?”  One of the characters, Phyllis, announced she was getting married.  When people asked her who she was engaged to, she would say “Robert Vance of Vance Refrigeration.”  Every time Robert Vance is mentioned on the show, they always say “Robert Vance of Vance Refrigeration.”  Obviously it worked.  I still remember his name.  (Check out Phyllis and Robert Vance of Vance Refrigeration’s wedding invitation.)

Since my business name is not tied to my name, I chose to emphasize my first name.  I also thought emphasizing my first name is personable and hopefully speaks to building relationships.  Now here is a struggle.  “Make your name memorable.”  At this particular networking event, there were at least three people with the root name “Laura.”  I took to saying “It’s ‘Laura’ with out the ‘U.'”  During the event, as I heard myself saying this, I thought this sounds antisocial.  The room is noisy and busy.  People might interpret what I am saying as “with out you.” NOT the impression I want to be leaving.  I should have had a strategy. I should have really thought this out better.  Well, it is back to the strategy board to try to come up with a better way to make my name memorable.

Written by The Purple Lara

May 19, 2008 at 5:00 PM

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