Lucky breaks


I asked a friend to recommend a consultant for a specific project, and he gave me four names. One of them sounded really familiar, but I couldn’t figure out where I knew the person from. Several hours later, I realized that the consultant had the same first and last name as a well-known industry figure from the late 1990s.

Since their last names were spelled differently, I knew I wasn’t dealing with the same person I remembered. This made sense, since the first individual has probably retired by now. But I have to wonder: does the new guy derive any benefit from having the same name as another well-known person in the business? In other words, is there goodwill to be gained by stumbling into a marketplace where people already “know” your name? I certainly think so, even if the transaction shortchanges the original person who blazed the trail before you.