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The MBA Bride | October 24, 2021

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The professional ramifications of changing your name

How Professional Women Can Change Their Name
Business women face a certain dilemma when they approach marriage – should they change their last name to their new hubby’s last name? Doing so can affect a woman’s professional brand and impact her career.
Leaving emotional and or aesthetic reasons aside, many women may find changing their name professionally to be too costly for their careers. Other women ask themselves the tough questions and decide to change their name without sacrificing their professionalism.
So what are some viable options for women who decide to change their name, but not give up their maiden-name identify?

Maiden Replaces Middle

Most people don’t go by their full name, including their middle, unless their mother is hollering or fiance is serious. So it may seem like a perfectly viable option to drop your middle name and replace it with your maiden name, allowing you to take your hubster’s last name. This may be helpful to keep your personal brand as you encourage professional contacts to call you by your full name.

Pro-Maiden, Pers-Married

Professional women also have the option of compartmentalizing and putting different names into different aspects of their lives. Women can use their maiden names in a professional setting, but use their married names in social settings. The tricky aspect of this is that, thanks to social media, it is more difficult to keep personal and professional image distinct. But as business-savvy women, business-oriented brides will figure it out.


Tack His On


If you’re one of those people who have a first, two middle, and maiden name? Why not just add a fifth name? No big deal. Right? After all, John Jacob Jingle Himer Smith is a cool name.




Ah, the almighty hyphen for many is the best of both worlds. Doing so enables those individuals in your professional network to identify you via your maiden name, but realize you have gotten hitched. After this name change, expect many “congratulations” to follow. Buyer beware: a downside to this hyphenation is the fact that your last name may not be exactly the same as your children, which may cause complications in picking children up from school and the like.
Each of these four options have upsides and downsides that each bride must evaluate. The good news is that there are options for women who have built their professional network with their maiden name and don’t want to sacrifice the hard work they put into building lasting connections. 

What other options do brides have in changing their last name?

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