The concept of names is getting a great deal of press in Connecticut — no doubt over the story of some Yale Law students who are naming names of individuals who allegedly posted comments about them on an internet board. 

Of course, you can always change your name (though not that easily), but typically the name you’re born with, is the name your stuck with. 

And if you get confused with another person of the same name, well, that’s life.

But a recent post by George’s Employment Blawg asks the provocative question:

Is a hiring manager named “David” more likely to give an edge to a job candidate also named “David”?

Recent academic research suggests that the answer is “yes,” even for other names with similar sounds, like “Dan” or “Dustin.”

George points to a study by a University of Buffalo Associate Professor who concludes:

some of the biggest decisions of our life — where we live, what we do, and who we marry — are influenced by our first name.

[His] summary of his research states that people are disproportionately likely to:

* live in states or cities resembling their names (e.g., people named Louis are especially likely to live in St. Louis);

* have careers that resemble their names (e.g., people named Dennis, Denis, Denise and Dena are all especially likely to be dentists);

* marry other people whose last names begin with the same letter as their own. A similar, but weaker, matching effect also occurs for people’s first names.

The lengthy post goes on to discuss "blind" hiring and whether that concept will work.  Ultimately, studies like these show that the decisions we make can be influenced by factors we may not be aware of.  By continuing to focus on job-related aspects for decision-making, we can reduce the influence that these other factors may play.

And on a less serious note speaking of the Name Game, there is the classic song by Shirley Ellis which you can view below: