14 Dec 2005

Romanian lack of openmindness


this post is a result of my utter disappoitment regarding the Romanian lack of openmindness and communication. i think that Romanians simply haven't understood neither the importance of communication, nor its benefits. Outrageous as it may sound, sometimes it seems to me that people here don't realise how essential it is to share ideas, to share knowledge, as well as to learn from others. I was reading "Brand new brand thinking" last night, a book edited by Merry Baskin and Mark Earls which i enjoy a lot, and in the foreword written by Campaign's editorial director Dominic Mills, there was this following phrase: "You don't have to agree with everything it says to gain from it. You may even violently disagree with some of its assertions - i did - but it'll make you think. Even if those ideas, all of them articulated with passion and a clarity of thought, make you just think for a nano-second about your own beliefs, then that is a job well done ". So well said. In a world full of so much information and so many ideas, most Romanians still tend to think that they master some sort of supreme truth - that they know everything about everything, that they are the possesors of the greatest thoughts, and that those who ask them to state these thoughts and opinions are some sort of intellectual smuggers willing to deprive them of some consistent recognition. Such a shame! The situation which got me started is the following. Grapefruit - a great Romanian branding consultancy delivering strategy, identity, design and interactive for brands and organizations - initiated a project called Branding Romania. A very necessary initiative if we think about Jack Trout's (not that i'm a big fan of Trout, but still, this time he is extremely right) recent verdict that Romania scores zero in the image sector. The website designed especially for this project is a collection of articles, essays and thoughts coming from people in the public arena concerned with the image of their country. As we should all be. And they recently developed a contest entitled "Ideas for Romania", for which people were invited to post their plans and ideas on how to improve Romania's image. Directly on the site. So that everybody can have access to them, discuss them, debate and get the best out of them. The symbolic prize is a book. It turned out that too few were interested in Romania's brand awareness or in their personal contribution to its development. They were just concerned about their ideas being stolen, in case they posted any ideas whatsoever. Instead of taking it as an opportunity of a brainstorming whose results could have been implemented for the sake of us all, they just proved their selfishness once again. A disgusting disgrace. Hopefully something will soon change.

4 comments:

cristina said...

I like the optimistic note at the end...but, hm, I guess it wont. Not soon anyway. It will take a while of 50 years or so...
You're very right in what you've said. And there's more. Romanians tend to complain too much, to look at the others garden too much, to put barriers in their thinking, to start with a negative thing in mind (to criticise without grounds), to see only one solution or none, to hide their fear behind mocking people that actually have the courage to stick out or to getting satisfied with not being satisfied... Not all of them of course, but the 80% of them or so...

abredross said...

16 years ago the sacrifice of a handful of young people offered us, Romanians, the biggest gift, after life and reason, that humans can receive: freedom. And it hit us in the head, in the back, in the ass, and fell to our feet. And it was never picked up. Most of us don't know what to do with it - nor what it actually is. Soon after the 1989 "Revolution", most of us Romanians looked in awe at this weird thing, freedom, not quite understanding what it is, not quite comprehending if it's to be eaten, worn or just assimilated. Pretty soon - those that understood what freedom is - that is, those that knew how to eat, wear and assimilate freedom, were looked down in anger, with disgust and disrespect. Today, freedom is a luxury that few of us can afford, but I hope you are right - I hope the future will be better from this point of view.

Stefan Liute said...

Branding Romania was meant to raise the interest of those who care--people like you. Do not expect the ignorant or the uninterested to do something about building a nation brand. It is people like you and me who may one day have the chance to contribute to such an effort, and take it.

diana said...

thank you! as long as there are people thinking like you, i sure believe there is hope.