How many of you are cringing at that title? Are you looking for an edit button somewhere, anywhere? Any idiot knows it’s rose, not rows, right? Misspelling that word changes the meaning entirely and makes the mis-speller look careless, disrespectful, or downright rude.
That’s exactly how I feel any time someone misspells my name.
My name is Theresa, but you’d be amazed at the amount of correspondence I get addressed to Teresa. It’s one thing if they’re initially reaching out after meeting me or being suggested to contact me and have only heard my name. What’s amazing and appalling are the number of times someone replies to an email, with my name spelled out right there in my signature, and loses the “h”. It literally occurs more often than not. Or the people who email me through Facebook. Once again, it’s right there, spelled out T-H-e-r-e-s-a.
Just like spelling rose – rows changes the meaning, misspelling a name does also. I know several Teresa’s. One of them is one of my best friends. I have no problem with the name. But it’s not ME.
My name and its spelling were chosen specifically. When my mom was five she promised her best friend, Theresa, that if she ever had a daughter she would name her after her. That story says volumes about my mom and it makes me incredibly proud to be the fulfillment of that promise.
Because of that history I’m also sensitive to others’ names. I have a couple of friends who both spell their names phonetically as well as literally. Both are important to their identity.
It just seems like a basic requirement. Communication 101. Social Media 101. Business 101. Particularly Business. If I’m looking to work with you and I write Dear Jon instead of Dear John, you would doubt whether I’d be a good person to trust with your trade. If I want to interview you and my request starts with Michele instead of Michelle, are you going to trust my quotes will be accurate? No way.
If you’re replying to an email, take one second and look at the signature of the person you’re replying to and make sure you’ve got it right. If you’re sending an email on Facebook or LinkedIn or any of the other Social Media sites, take that second and look at the name. It’s simple and quick and, while it may not keep you from looking careless, or disrespectful, or downright rude, it will not ensure you do.