Thursday, February 20, 2014

Tip of the Day: Why You Need TWO Business Cards If Working Abroad

Why would I even begin to suggest that diplomats, aid workers, expats, government officials, multinational executives, entrepreneurs, etc. have two business cards? 

Worldwide, there are people who take advantage of overly-transparent people every day for their own self-interests, some commendable, and others, not at all. 

Worse, as daily newspapers sadly reveal to us far too often, opportunists, predators, violent criminals, mass murderers, deviants and the mentally ill come in all forms, but  some cloak their true intentions charismatically.

It is critical that you remain focused in reducing your profile and vulnerability when it is in your best interests to do so.

So, the lesson-point today is to have TWO business cards on your person at all times.

When you get a free moment, pull out one of your business cards and look at it carefully. 

If you have only one business card, you may be taking far too many risks.

If you have two business cards, you are a winner! You've also demonstrated that you're very, very security-conscious.

If you're like most people these days, the following can often appear on your sole business card:
  • Full name
  • University degrees held
  • Work address, city, country and postal code
  • Work phone number
  • Work fax number
  • E-mail address
  • Linked-in account
  • Facebook Page
  • Twitter account
  • Personal email address
First of all, the list above provides far too much information about you.

Below in yellow is the information that you will omit from your second business card:
  • Full name
  • University degrees
  • Work address, city, country and postal code
  • Work direct-line
  • Your employer's operator's number
  • Mobile phone number
  • Work fax number
  • E-mail address
  • Linked-in account
  • Facebook Page
  • Twitter account
  • Personal email address
Let's assume that you are a single woman living abroad. Now look back to the first list I presented that could be on your only business card. Not good.

Let me give you another real-life example. Let's say that you work at an embassy or consulate abroad and are from a developed nation. We can add to this variable that your  country is one where everyone wants to visit.

Hypothetically, let's assume that you are employed as "chief of the non-immigrant visa section" or "chief of the immigrant visa section." Either way, "your goose is cooked" from the standpoint of ever having a personal life in the country to which you are assigned, as everyone and their brother will be hounding you constantly in helping them get a visa. 

Are you now beginning to see why everyone needs a second business card that has only their name on it and a mobile phone number?

If you're like I am, I have two mobiles. One for work  and one for personal use. Even telemarketers and people you don't want to be bothered by may eventually obtain your mobile number which could involve either your work mobile or your personal cell.

If you're plagued by folks you really don't want to hear from, just change your mobile phone number.

A final thought. Use a trusted, reputable printer to produce your second business card. Also, ask them NOT to post your card in their office, which many printers do without asking for permission.