One name is as good as another


I have a favorite quote excerpted from the Sergio Leone directed 1966 movie classic, ‘The good, the bad and the ugly’ and it goes: one name is as good as another.

Yes, one name is as good as another name and infact, there is really nothing in a name. Nothing. A name does not take anything away from you. And it doesn’t matter how it sounds or how many letters it comprises.

I find it puzzling, when I hear young Africans (especially), who don’t feel comfortable with the names that they have been christened, and go further to adopt or even switch completely to an English name (for no justifiable reason), just so they can sound polished, in the name of branding. It makes no sense to me.

The thing is, english is a language just like all other languages. It is not superior. In the way that folks from england bear english names, germans bear german names, japanese folks bear japanese names. The dutch, the poles, spanish folks. Name it. We just don’t get it…..the Chinese folks who use English names, do so only for business purposes. They use proxy names, just so they can connect at that level with the people they transact businesses with. The moment they get off the office or back home, they fall back to their local names.

Methinks that it smirks off a kind of inferiority complex when you see people (Africans in particular) take this option, for no justifiable reason. Truth is, a Unity Osamudiame Ivongbe is as good as a Barack Hussein Obama, a Richard Branson does not sound better than Abiodun Odunuga, an Esohe Idogun can make the waves Joyce Meyer is making. Les Brown is no better than a Mubaraq Tiamiyu. Tope Hassan is as good as Oprah Winfrey…. there’s no difference. We are the ones who make our names great by the value we represent. Period. In that we can make a product in Aba, Nigeria (with local names) and it appears on the shelves of retail outlets on the streets of Champs Elysee, Paris.  And that an Inosson IVM 6490A SUV can by potential reach beyond the Nigerian market to the streets of Kigali Rwanda and be used on the highways of Caracas in Venezuela. Yes, it is about value.

Did you know that Louis Vuitton, Tommy Hilfiger, Balenciaga, Guccio Gucci, are the names of people — humans like you and I. Those people made their names popular by the contributions they are making and not the other way round. Names mean nothing. There is a mango brand (with fashion outlets around the world), apple (with computer and mobile devices everywhere), and windows (with software on almost every computer)…when these products first came out under those label, we found it odd, but now they are household names because we have gotten used to it. What is true for the value those organizations represent is that their name is not as important as the story they are telling.

And it is the same for you. Your name is not as important as the value you represent and the kind of story that your brand is communicating. This is the real conversation.



  1. victor mark December 23, 2017 at 10:18 pm - Reply

    Great Words brother!

  2. Azeke December 23, 2017 at 10:58 pm - Reply


  3. Unity December 24, 2017 at 10:31 am - Reply

    Thanks for staying tuned, @Victor Mark & Azeke

  4. Osadebamwen December 24, 2017 at 12:25 pm - Reply

    Truth be told.
    It doesn’t matter if the name is 10 letter word like Oyakhilome or Zuckerberg , Osamudiame what matters is really the value, it doesn’t have to be Brown, Jobs, Gates. What matters is value. And it’s so disheartening to see shoes made in Aba bearing Armani rather Ogechukwu.

    • iunity December 24, 2017 at 8:59 pm - Reply

      True @Osadebamwen. We need to keep passing this message out to those within our radius of influence. Thanks for stopping by

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