Magazine article Management Today

What's Your Problem?

Magazine article Management Today

What's Your Problem?

Article excerpt

Q: This might seem petty, but I'm upset that all my colleagues and mates have business cards but I don't. I asked my line manager about it and he said that because I don't go out on client meetings and am quite junior, I don't need them. I tried to explain that I sometimes meet contacts at conferences and that it would be useful for me to have one, but he refuses. I don't think it's fair. What should I do?

A: I wonder how long you've been with this company and just how junior you are? Assuming your line manager to be a reasonable sort of person, it sounds to me as if he's not yet comfortable with the thought of your publicly representing the company.

There's something about a business card, even without a title on it, that confers a certain authority on its holder. It's presumably this very fact that makes you want one - and may also be the reason why your manager has so far decided to withhold it. I dare say he'd be reluctant to spell this out to you.

If in the course of your conference-going you encounter genuine prospective clients, it's clearly in the interests of your company that you should hold a business card. …

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