As a ten-year-old in 1969, I can recall the famed Canadian department store Eaton’s – the T. Eaton Company – marking its 100th anniversary. In those days much of the department store business was carried out over the phone, with the product being delivered in a day or two. As part of the celebrations, Eaton’s omnipresent trucks were festooned with a logo to mark the centennial. After all, a hundred years in business is nothing to sneeze at.
I’m no businessman, but I think some companies play fast and easy with the “Since …” concept. I think there should be guidelines; no bragging about your company’s longevity until it’s, well, long. It’s just plain silly to see a truck with “Ted’s Plumbing Since 2004”. That’s sixteen years, good, and I hope it goes on, but not yet worthy of a “Since …” brag.
I noticed the other night that the folks at Miss Vickie’s potato chip company proudly claim that their product has been “Crafted with Care in Canada Since 1987”. Thinking that the company was 133 years old, I had to look twice to see that it is 1987, not 1887. That’s thirty-three years worth of chips. Fine chips I might add, but for a company that is now owned by PepsiCo, no slouch itself, maybe hold off on the bragging a little. Perhaps fifty would be better.
I graduated from university six years before there was a Miss Vickies.
Roots Canada has a better grip on the “Since …” concept. At forty-seven they are close enough to the half-century that the boast doesn’t look silly.
Then again, maybe this is all about me getting older, and not about businesses at all. Hmmm … I wonder.