What Do You Call Your Direct Reports?

More and more organizations are getting creative with the titles they assign to their associates.  Titles like Sanitation Engineer (Janitor), Sandwich Artist (sub maker), VP, Hiring Really Great Talent (VP, HR), Corporate Magician (Admin Assistant), Transportation Captain (Driver), Director of First Impressions (Receptionist) are imaginative and conjure up fun images of the company and incumbents.  These untraditional titles stand out, make great conversation fodder, and communicate the company’s culture.

Some organizations choose titles that are attractive to customers and industry associates (banks are infamous for all their Vice Presidents).  Sales people have the greatest variety of titles: Sales Rep, Account Executive, Business Development Executive, Customer Specialist, and Sales Ninja.

When posting for job openings use titles that will resonate with the types of candidates you want to attract.  If you call your sales person VP, Sales and post the job that way, expect candidates with much sales experience, a significant group of direct reports, and higher salary expectations. If you post for a Sandwich Artist, you’ll likely not get responses from someone expecting to work behind a deli counter.

The title you use in your job posting doesn’t have to be the title you assign to the new hire.  Similarly, the title put on someone’s business card need not be the same title they hold within the organization.  For the same job, there can be different titles for job postings, business cards, and internal classification.

Empower your team to be creative in the titles they use, when appropriate and everyone will experience more success (and fun).

 

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