What's in a name?

It was raining again when I asked my daughter a question before driving her to school.

She's 8 - so I was curious... 

"If you were having a baby, would you decide what name to call the baby before it was born?"

"Of course not." 

"How come?"

"Because the name might not suit the baby.  Like "Matilda" doesn't suit me.  "Matilda" might suit my baby but it doesn't suit me."

The question I asked "Matilda" didn't come in a vacuum. It came after a business owner asked ChangeAgents what we thought of their new company name.  Did we  think it was a good name?

Thank goodness I said nothing - didn't rush to judgement.  I didn't know the business, its customers, its ambitions, it's promise - I knew nothing worth knowing.  So how could I decide whether "The House of Little Miss Piggy" was a good name?

All her life "Matilda" will be saddled with the name I gave her before I knew her.  Her entire life will be constrained by that name.  People will form an impression of her as soon as they hear her name. People will form expectations simply from the name. "Matilda" will remind them of that wonderfully exciting aunt they loved when they were 8. "Matilda" will bring back nightmares of chaos they experienced when they were 8.

All her life your company will be saddled with the name you give her.  

You might turn out to be a really courageous person - brave & adventurous - throw caution to the wind.  You might rename your business - like The River Lee Hotel in Cork did. You might be willing to abandon the past for the sake of the future.

What sort of courage has it taken to kill off Superquinn?

What sort of money?

Your name matters to you.
It may not be you. You may have to put up with it, work around it, tolerate it - but it may drive you mad & cost you happiness.

Business names can be great for a while & then become a disadvantage. [That's another part of the story.]

Better to have a name that suits your business eh?

I can't help thinking of the people at Musgrave, SuperValu & Superquinn today - as they change the name.