Monday, May 6, 2013

Confidence

I've said we'll miss a lot of things about living in Europe. We're sure of it. But it became obvious to me last week outside of a Belgian supermarket, one of the biggest things we'll miss is the lack of over confidence. Europeans are not really so in-your-face about their opinions. They're happy to sit down over a coffee and chat for hours about differences of opinion, but they certainly aren't going to blast it across kingdom come to get their point heard (unless of course, they've organized an orderly demonstration for that). They tend to hold strong opinions and values, but keep opinions to themselves in a more quiet manner.

Anyway, as I was walking to the car, a truck passed me. Not just any truck, but a waffle delivery truck. I'd seen the delivery man taking loads of waffles into the store. The truck whooshed past me and the words written across advertisement on the side the truck seemed to scream out in plain and simply. The ad on the side of the truck read "Probably the best since 1950".

This is the Belgaufra motto "Probably the best..." Not "We are the Best makers of waffles in the world" or  "we make the bast darn waffle this side of the Belgium" not even "the best since..."
No. The ad reads 'probably'- as if to open the door for contention. The motto seems to imply 'Perhaps we're the best, and we think it was around 1950 that we got there, but we're not sure. It could have been 1951. Or maybe we're not the best at all?" There is no illusion or haughtiness in their motto. They don't assume anything. Were they made to knock themselves down a notch to "probably the best" after a double dare was lost with another waffle company? Did the business start from a shy, unassuming lad who just wanted to put food on the table and didn't worry about branding? Who knows?

Nevertheless, I love that they aren't so off putting, or arrogant, as to stamp a motto across products that they are indeed the best darn waffle company since 1950. It is in fact, a matter of opinion of course. I love more, that they don't have to use arrogant confidence or assume they are "the best" in the business to actually sell waffles. They seem to be doing fairly well for themselves. After all, they are "probably the best..." Here's the company website Belgaufra
Yep, we'll miss the toned down aura of personality and market. And "probably the best"waffles too.

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