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Poll: You In One Or Two Words

For the last few months, I’ve been asked, “Do you have a business card?” The answer has always been no because:

1) I’m not a businessman

2) It still kind of catches me by surprise when people want to hire me for something, whether it’s kettlebell instruction, blogging, to get something off the top shelf, or to pummel their arch-enemies into oblivion.

But what would my business card say, if I decided I wanted one? Obliviator? Pummel-Man? After some non-thought, I decided I wanted one and acted impulsively.

Some day I might even be brave enough to pass it out.

About 90% ironic...

It’s memorable and it makes me smile. That’s really all that I’m ever after.

But what about you? You get one or two words. “Badass” is usually only one word, but the more I looked at it, the more poorly it read to me, so I went with two.

So you get one or two words to tell us who you are. Pretend you’re making the business card. What are you all about?


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  • Earl February 23, 2010, 12:10 am

    I’ve started referring to myself as “World Explorer” lately whenever anyone asks me what I do. I’d love to put that on a business card!

  • Edward - Entry Level Dilemma February 23, 2010, 12:59 am

    Right-brained Scientist.

    I combine the traditional “left-brained” analytical and logical approach to science with “right-brained” creativity and intuition.

    As an active networker and job seeker, I do have business cards and they do have that written on it just below my name. The whole idea of a tag-line is to have something catchy that draws the reader in and makes them want to ask more about you.

  • Ryan G February 23, 2010, 1:18 am

    I had the same question bouncing around my head lately. I was referred to a really awesome designer/printer in my area and was about to commission some work when I realized “I don’t know what I want these business cards to communicate”.

    So far, the best I’ve come up with is:
    R. Glass

    • Josh Hanagarne February 23, 2010, 10:42 am

      I don’t know if there’s anything better out there. Creativity is always my favorite thing that someone can have going for them.

  • Milo February 23, 2010, 4:07 am

    ‘Buried Treasure’

    Cos I haven’t come close to fulfilling my potential.

    Though this might only work if I was handing my business card out to a bunch of pirates… arrrr..

  • Kira February 23, 2010, 4:49 am

    Kira Clarke: Slow Learner

    Better to learn something slowly than not at all ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Josh Hanagarne February 23, 2010, 10:07 am

      I think yours should say “Missile Command.”

  • Matthew Needham February 23, 2010, 4:58 am

    I’m in the process of getting round to ordering some new business cards.

    Whilst I like the sound of ‘Bad Ass’ it’s more about what you are than who you are.

    I quite like the idea of ‘value magician’.

    I’m an accountant, interim manager and blogger. I help people create value.

    • Josh Hanagarne February 23, 2010, 10:07 am

      That’s very clever. I like it. But I’ve got to disagree, I’m a bad ass when it comes to compassion, blogging, insecurity, empathy, kettlebells, deadlifting, family time, friendship, and humility:) All of those things are who I am, not what I am.

  • Avil Beckford February 23, 2010, 5:29 am

    Invisible Mentor

  • Julianne Fuchs-Musgrave February 23, 2010, 6:11 am

    In the exit session of a graduate course in Art Therapy, it was the professors habit to “sum up” her final impression of each of us. Many were one word statements, “Fearless,” “Beginning,” “Stalwart.” They were, I believe, a way to help us see ourselves as we trudged onward. She would then interpret–but only a little.
    I was last, an old lady student–close to the professor’s own age, our early 50’s being much more than most other students.
    “‘Old Soul’, I always have the sense that you’ve been here before. And when you assume that, how powerful you will be.”
    Old soul.

  • Christopher Kabamba February 23, 2010, 6:25 am

    “Quiet Heart” ~ ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Josh Hanagarne February 23, 2010, 10:04 am

      Christopher, you’re a good man and a very nice one:)

  • Heather February 23, 2010, 6:37 am

    Rockabilly Librarian or Kettlebell Goddess—I can’t decide which. Superhero would be good too, thanks for asking! Ooh! I know! FABULOUS CHICK! Yeah! That’s what mine would say! FABULOUS CHICK!

    • Josh Hanagarne February 23, 2010, 10:05 am

      How about Senora All Caps?

      • Heather February 23, 2010, 10:13 am

        Yeah, I could go with that one too! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Greg February 23, 2010, 6:48 am

    That’s tough. For me – “Husband, Father.”

  • Lisis February 23, 2010, 7:07 am

    Mine would say, “Extreme Encourager”… and it would have a phone number, or email, or website so the person in need of encouraging could get in touch with me.


    • Josh Hanagarne February 23, 2010, 10:04 am

      I think you got it. And maybe your tagline could be something like “Encouraging you with a vengeance. Submit.”

  • Ted @ Beverly Supplements February 23, 2010, 8:12 am

    Depends on the hat I’m wearing. Bodybuilder, Web Developer, Explorer, Author…..

    Hmm… maybe the only way to unite all those is ‘Distracted!’

    • Josh Hanagarne February 23, 2010, 10:03 am

      Ted, I want to see a picture of your bodybuilding hat.

  • Zach @College for 10k February 23, 2010, 8:23 am

    Passionate Lover

  • Andria February 23, 2010, 8:25 am

    That’s a pretty cool question, albeit not an altogether straight-forward one for this indecisive Libran (which is not exactly what I would want to advertise). Perhaps, just:


    Runners-up might be:
    Damn Good Friend
    Helping Hand
    Animal Rescuer
    Calls it Like She Sees It & Might Piss you Off (clearly I’m not following directions at this point).

    ๐Ÿ™‚ I could probably come up with a few more, but I’ll refrain unless I come up with that one magical catch-phrase that can sum me up in a few choice syllables.

  • Anne February 23, 2010, 8:26 am

    This is actually easy – “Crazy Person” But in the fun, lovable crazy kind of way. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Josh Hanagarne February 23, 2010, 10:02 am

      Only someone with a sideways avatar could make such a claim.

  • Peggy February 23, 2010, 9:14 am

    A few years ago, my boyfriend got me some half-joking business cards. I’m a cognitive neuroscience grad student, so my cards say “Brain Detective: Private fMREye.”

    We thought it was funny.

  • ami February 23, 2010, 9:39 am

    Wonderful challenge Josh, and I like what others have proposed for themselves. A 1-2 word limit forces you to think hard, to focus and distill – and the result may change over time.

    But at least, for today, for me:
    – Seeker.

    • Josh Hanagarne February 23, 2010, 10:02 am

      Seeker as in Harry Potter? Or as in that song by The Who? Oh, I’m so confused!

      • ami February 23, 2010, 10:11 am

        haha – this is why you have to let yourself revise. There was something in the back of my little brain saying, hmmmm, I think that word’s been used before and not in the way I mean. But “seeker” sounded better than “one who constantly researches” or “library addict” or “socially inept information hunter.”

  • Liz February 23, 2010, 9:46 am

    Hmm…lots of things are going through my mind, but in the end I think I’ve come down to this:

    Unexpected Talents

    • Josh Hanagarne February 23, 2010, 10:01 am

      Do tell!

      • Liz February 24, 2010, 11:51 am

        Oh, I’m just always surprising people with some talent or experience. People like to put others into categories and assume things about them, and I’m constantly breaking the mold.

        As far as specific talents – not sure if you ever listened to the singing link I posted a few months ago, but that’s one that often surprises people. But it’s not the only one.

  • Ethan February 23, 2010, 9:46 am

    I gave this some serious thought a few weeks ago when I saw one of those “news of the weird” stories where the police in a small Welsh community had called in a “warlock” to consult on a case with apparent connections to black magic.

    If someone handed me a business card that said “Consulting Warlock,” I’d probably take him pretty seriously.

    • Josh Hanagarne February 23, 2010, 10:01 am

      I think Julian Sands had one of those in the late 80s.

  • Srinivas Rao February 23, 2010, 10:03 am

    Mine would say “Professional Hedonist”. I’ll let you fill in the blanks.

  • Birdy Diamond February 23, 2010, 10:50 am

    The one that sums up the many facets is…

    Web-weaver .

  • Jenn February 23, 2010, 11:32 am

    I’ve been lurking (and recommending) your blog for weeks. It’s great. Almost too great because I get a little jealous when I read it. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    My general card would say would say
    “Student of Life”

    My pretentious housewife (is that possible?) would say.
    “Domestic Artist”

    The girl who kicks ass in her garage would say.
    “Scrawny Beasty”

    Thanks for the laughs and excellent writing.

    • Josh Hanagarne February 23, 2010, 11:56 am

      Jenn, if i was scrawny, I would steal Scrawny Beasty. That is probably the best thing I’ll hear today.

  • Ryan Carty February 23, 2010, 11:41 am

    Today would be…Chronic Procrastinator.

  • shauna palmer February 23, 2010, 11:47 am

    nerdy art school reformist, Shauna Palmer, plays an artist who’s dreaming of superstardom. Creating art mainly at night and alone in her studio while jamming to the sound of various rock metal gods, she has acquired the moniker, Rockstar. Able to leap incredible art deadlines in a single night with little more than paint, glue and doodads…she astounds her grunge art community on a semi-regular basis.

    Shauna Palmer

    • Lynn Kilpatrick February 23, 2010, 8:45 pm

      Shauna: Why not “Gluegun Rockstar” ?

      • Josh Hanagarne February 24, 2010, 10:51 am

        I like that:)

        • shauna palmer February 24, 2010, 11:14 am

          you’re right it’s too predictable…i’ve changed my title to doodle wrapper. nuff said.

  • Teena February 23, 2010, 11:55 am

    Mine would say:
    Persistent Life-lover

  • JoAnna February 23, 2010, 12:04 pm

    Tempted to say “Extrovert Wannabe” but definitely okay with “Just Me.”

  • Bill Jones February 23, 2010, 12:08 pm

    I’ve worn many “hats” in my day…writer, body builder, business owner, personal trainer, physical therapist, “shoulder to lean on person”…I’m thinking maybe:
    “PhysioMental Terrorist”…

  • Michelle McGee February 23, 2010, 12:13 pm

    Believer extraordinaire

  • Michael Stagg | My II Sense February 23, 2010, 12:19 pm

    Kick-ass Scribe! Yeah…I want a card with that on it! What do you think Josh?

    • Michael Stagg | My II Sense February 24, 2010, 12:20 pm

      Better yet, I can go with what my former boss called his security team: “Door Monster”! I might not get any clients but it will be worth seeing the look on people’s faces! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Jared Savik February 23, 2010, 12:40 pm

    “Professional Amatuer”


    “Sock Puppet Proctologist”

  • Sue February 23, 2010, 1:03 pm

    “Life Master” … because I AM.

  • Colin Wright February 23, 2010, 1:45 pm

    Colin Wright

    (at the moment, this has multiple meanings…time for breakfast!)

  • Michelle @ Following Your Joy February 23, 2010, 2:32 pm

    “Joy Follower”!

    Thanks for asking the question. And your business card certainly gives me a more fun idea of who you are! ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Josh Hanagarne February 24, 2010, 10:54 am

      Thanks Michelle. “Joy follower” is pretty good, but I want to see it change into “Joy leader:)”

  • Karetha February 23, 2010, 3:01 pm

    My answer for this changes from day to day.

    Today it would be:

    Always Learning

  • Kelly King Anderson February 23, 2010, 3:12 pm

    Hi Josh,
    Great to meet you at our Seth Godin event. This is a great post.
    I’ve been thinking about this because “Startup Princess” is my company and often its become a title for me as well but it’s really not “who I am” because I am more than that and my business doesn’t define me entirely.

    Today my business card would say:

    Kelly King Anderson

    • Josh Hanagarne February 24, 2010, 10:53 am

      Kelly, did you see the picture of us from the event? My hand is just sitting on your shoulder in a big fist, like a lunchbox. It’s pretty awkward looking:)

      It was great to meet you too. You put on a great, great show.

  • Suzannah February 23, 2010, 5:08 pm

    Suzannah Windsor Freeman
    Writer Extraordinaire

    What? Too optimistic??

  • Lynn Kilpatrick February 23, 2010, 8:37 pm

    Word Lifter

  • Jennifer le Roux February 23, 2010, 8:43 pm

    I don’t know why but the two words that popped into my head were
    Jennifer le Roux
    Life Expectant
    I’m not sure why, and pretty sure I’m not pregnant!
    my favorites so far have been “Scrawny Beastie” and
    “Consulting Warlock”!!

  • Gary Berenbroick February 24, 2010, 7:29 am

    Little Giant

  • Jodi Kaplan February 24, 2010, 7:31 am


    The Flash

  • Stephanie Smith February 24, 2010, 8:56 am

    “Chocolate Marshmellow” -cuz I can seem both hard or sweet on the outside, my my closest and dearest know how mushy I am inside!

    • Josh Hanagarne February 24, 2010, 10:44 am

      I’m changing mine to burnt marshmallow.

  • Laura February 24, 2010, 11:20 am

    I think mine would be one word: Believer

    My husband has Fearless Leader on his business cards.

  • Dan O'Connor February 24, 2010, 8:50 pm


    Good question there Josh. I will put down what popped into my head and not analyze it.

    Dragon Song

  • kendall ruth February 26, 2010, 1:58 pm

    Just subscribed to our RSS feed and saw this. Laughed.
    I have the same response when people ask for a business card… I don’t have one either.
    And I’ve gone through the same “what if i did what would it say?” thoughts.
    one word: Impossible
    or more than one: What are you waiting for?

    • Josh Hanagarne February 26, 2010, 3:31 pm

      All right Kendall, go get your business card. It’s time.

  • Ifor Williams April 9, 2010, 7:34 am

    I think this one is pretty good, only one work though.


    In all aspects of life, continually getting better…

    • Ifor Williams April 9, 2010, 7:34 am

      one word*

  • albert camus April 10, 2010, 4:33 am

    Albert Camus – I live in wonder