Soon after creating Oikos I had some great graphic design done by AskSanik who created my logo and put together some designs for print materials, including a business card.
And a business card needs a job title that says what I do on it.
I didn’t want to be just “Web Developer” because I have business, consultancy and training skills too. But I didn’t like the word “consultant” either as many people have a pre-conceived idea of what a consultant is and does.
References to technology might scare off non-technical people, but I am primarily doing technical work, so I needed to communicate that.
I also run Oikos and many people who run their own businesses proudly have “director” or some other management term on their card. But I’m a sole trader, so, though I set up Oikos, I’m not officially a manager of any sort.
After much thought I came up with a three-part title: “Creator – Engineer – Advisor”
“Creator” expresses two things: that I set up Oikos, and that it’s a creative job. And by creative I don’t mean “artistic”, I mean the more general sense of creating. I will be making websites, but I also aim to build businesses and communities.
“Engineer” is the part that says that I’m technical. But I’m not just a sit-in-the-corner-and-code web developer: I understand the problems I’m solving and apply relevant technologies and processes to overcome them.
“Advisor” says that I work with people, listen to them, understand them, and give input to what they’re doing. It’s the consultancy part of what I do, but without the preconceptions of what a consultant might be.
I hope that my job title says enough about what I do without sounding either too complicated or too pretentious.