Friday, May 10, 2013

How do you introduce yourself?

Earlier in the year, I had the opportunity to travel with one of my teams at the high school level for an out of town tournament. This is not something that is mandatory at my school, but I use this as an opportunity to gain a rapport with my coaches and athletes, but to also network with the host athletic trainer. After arriving at the gym for practice, the host athletic trainer introduced himself to my coaches. While my coaches were pleased to meet the host athletic trainer, they mentioned that they had a Licensed Athletic Trainer traveling with them. When I noticed from a distance who he was, I took it upon myself to go introduce myself. As I introduced myself with my name, and he did his, I was not too sure what he said his name was, so at the end of the conversation, I asked, “and what was your name again?” He replied back with, “Doc.”

WHAT?!?! I understand that a lot of athletic trainers are referred to as “Doc” but I was shocked when he introduced himself to another Licensed Athletic Trainer as “Doc”. Now had he of said, “My name is __________, but you can call me “Doc”, I would have found that a little more appropriate.

It was at this moment, when I realized that there are a lot of athletic training professionals that are still “old school”. I understand that the term “Doc” was widely used in the Athletic Training Profession years ago as a nickname, but a lot of athletic trainers are moving away from this term. I believe this term creates confusion for the athletes and parents because they think they are seeing a Doctor when the athletic trainer is referred to as “Doc.” But in this particular case, “Doc” was not referred to as a nickname, rather it was the way he introduced himself. After our brief conversation, I then went to my phone to look up the school’s website to find out what his real name was, which I should have learned in his introduction.

So as the school year comes to a close for most of us, attending Conventions and Symposiums is in our horizon. We encourage our colleagues to network with professionals and to always make good first impressions. Remember to introduce yourself accurately and appropriately. Not only are you representing yourself and your work place, but you never know who you will meet or get introduced to. 

No comments: