Do You Have Business Cards?

by Sarah Roark Schott, former Head Editor, INALJ Arizona
previously published 6/18/13

Do You Have Business Cards?

SarahRoarkSchottINALJLike many of the new archivists I know, I am a contract project archivist. This means I am only guaranteed two years of work at the institution I work with right now, not an employee who is expected to stick around for my entire archives career. That is fine, I did not expect to enter into my dream forever job right out of school. However, it does mean the institution I work for has not been proactive about ordering business cards for my position. Although I would really love to have that little official symbol at the bottom of the card I hand out, it does not mean I just pass out little scraps of paper with my email and phone number to everyone I meet at conferences or in social situations.

Once I was sure my employer probably wasn’t going to order cards for me, I started looking for alternative ways of ordering some for myself. Since I am pretty sure I am not allowed to just slap my institution’s symbol on an unofficial card, I decided to come up with something that would be a good representative of who I am as a young, excited, and professional project archivist. In addition, I needed to think about what information to put on my card. Did I want to keep it simple with my name, email address, and title? Or did I want to go all out and turn my card into a mini-resume or something in between the two?

Here are the sites I checked out for cards:


I also considered making the cards myself, and I think that is a great option! However I couldn’t justify using the printer ink for it. I was looking for something with fun colors, and I like to keep the printer ink for resumes. 🙂 So, I ended up picking Zazzle for my cards simply because they had a fresh design I loved, and it ended up being very affordable for 100 cards (around $20). Once I had my design picked out, I decided to make my card a mini-resume. Under my name, phone number, and professional email address I listed the archive-related experience I have. Because I have library and archive experience I decided to keep this card simple and just list my volunteer and employment history in the archives field. Perhaps I will make a library-related card if I decide to go that route after my 2 year contract is up here! Or maybe I’ll make a bigger card and add it all!

What about other business card ideas? Would you guys consider putting your alma mater or other various volunteer experience? What do you think about having a mini-resume on your card? Where do you hand out your business cards if you have them? I would love to hear about your business cards if you are in the same boat as me, or are currently between gigs!

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