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Manager vs. manager

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A reader writes: “For the second year in a row, I have composed a short e-mail invite to the managers and supervisors on staff. Another employee informed me that the words ‘managers’ and ‘supervisors’ should be capitalized. What is the correct capitalization in this situation?”

Most stylebooks agree: Only capitalize a title if it precedes a name. Example: “General Manager Jane Smith speaks at a noon luncheon” but “Jane Smith, general manager, speaks at a noon luncheon.” It has nothing to do with rank; the same rule applies to presidents and prime ministers.

Looking for a good stylebook? Try the Chicago Manual of Style, The Gregg Reference Manual, Ninth Edition, or the Franklin Covey Style Guide for Business and Technological Communication.

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