Business cards

Today I received my first business card. I'm 31 years old. I was in a meeting when my colleague brought them in (after they had been delayed for 4 months). I couldn't stop holding the box of cards and smiling.

I started wondering why business cards meant so much to me....

It's not like I haven't been working for the past ten years. I've been a Camp Counselor, an Outdoor Education Instructor, a Teacher and a Teacher Leader. 

Yet...I've never owned a business card. My favorite breakfast diner in college had a "business person's breakfast". My roommate and I used to laugh, remembering that scene in Romy and Michele's High School Reunion (yes, I'm admitting to watching that movie) where they try to prove they are now successfully employed. They basically try to order that meal to seem impressive, since they actually haven't had a job since high school.

I, unlike Romy and Michele, have never wanted to be a business woman. I'm not even sure what that means. Yet something about that elusive business card always screamed "professional" to me. The fact that in order to have a business card as a teacher I would have to make them myself seemed a bit embarrassing. Why, I wondered, didn't my profession warrant a business card? Did my employers assume I would never be networking? Attending conferences? Interacting with the public?

A business card is a tiny square piece of paper, yet ultimately it makes a statement about who you are. That's why companies spend so much time picking out their logo, font, color scheme and type of paper, right? Ever so subtly, the business card is definitely an identifying factor. Shouldn't everyone have one? Doesn't everyone, in their own way, conduct important business? Merriam-Webster defines "business" as "work that is part of a job".

It's my personal opinion that I, like everyone else who works, deserves a business card. Sure, I don't need a little piece of paper to tell me who I am. But it sure helps to send a strong message to the outside world.