The value of a title

9 Sep

We’ve all heard of MDs, MBAs, and PhDs.  We usually deal with a CPA once a year. I don’t have to tell you what these stand for. You know. You are familiar with them, and therefore you understand their value.  What about MPS? Do you know what that is? I don’t. The point is that titles are important, but only if you know what they mean.

Would you go to a doctor that didn’t have a MD after his or her name? Probably not.  MD stands for medical doctor. You may need to go to a PsyD, which is a doctor of psychology. You may want your lawyer to be a JD and he or she probably uses the abbreviation to Esquire in his/her cards.

There are some titles that are obscure, like the MPS. Does it mean anything at first glance? Probably only to those who have it. MP, on the other hand, stands for Member of Parliament in the United Kingdom, which may be a pretty important title.  Some organizations, such as the IABC (International Association of Business Communicators) and the PRSA (Public Relations Society of America) issue certificates like the ABC and APR respectively. The problem is that no one outside of a small circle knows what it means. In fact, you can be a business communicator or a public relations practitioner WITHOUT being accredited. On the other hand, you cannot practice medicine legally without your proper degree.

My point is that we all like titles. In fact, some cultures love titles. However, if you are going to use them as a marketing point, you better be sure that people know what the title is and what it stands for.  I got an invitation to an event where the speaker is the aforementioned “MPS.” Am I supposed to be impressed?  I  don’t even know what it stands for!

Anybody have a title they have seen and don’t know what it is?

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One Response to “The value of a title”

  1. Randy Zwitch September 9, 2009 at 5:11 pm #

    My favorite is seeing “First Last, PMP”. Because of how the M looks next to the P, it looks like “First Last, PIMP”. Which of course, leads to the inevitable jokes:

    “Is PIMP your official title?”
    “What does that stand for, Project Management Pimp?”
    “Are you a Portable Music Player?”

    etc.

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