Smaller and larger businesses are created one after the other and then closed down. Surviving, especially for 10 years, is to the lot of a very few, but Galloman has succeeded! How do you evaluate the last 10 years, what are you most proud of?
Balázs: If you had asked me that question before Covid, I would have said that I am proud of the hard work we have been doing for the past 10 years, and of our rigorous perseverance. We needed rigour to stick to our strategy and our mission statement instead of everyday opportunism. Also, I am proud of watching Galloman grow and become stronger and more professional year by year.
However, since you are asking me in the middle of this pandemic, frankly, I am most proud of the fact that we can help. In both2020 and 2021, we offered and are still offering pro bono services for those clients in most severe need. I wish we had the resources to keep doing this and (in parallel with our business development) to be a socially responsible company.
Starting a business is always a big step, an integral part of a process that can take many years. The roots of Galloman can be traced back to 2002, to become a separate legal entity in 2010. Have you always dreamed of having your own business, or did life decide that for you?
Balázs: That’s a difficult question. I would say that it was the natural flow of creative energy in my environment and myself. I am glad that I was employed by several companies beforehand, but I also think I am more of an entrepreneurial type of guy. In addition, languages, cultural diversity and traveling have always been important to me, especially the French language and culture. I didn’t plan to create Galloman, but I was prepared to do it when the time came. It was born naturally.
The name of the company, Galloman, can make us think of Asterix and Obelix … Does Galloman mean “Francophile,” or “fan of the French?” How and why did you choose this name? Is it your attachment to the French language and culture that is behind it?
Balázs: Yes, indeed, I wanted to create a name myself, and I wanted this name to have a French flavour. An integrative approach referring to all French-speaking countries and cultures today. They are all parts of our DNA, so I hope we can serve them as a bridge or hub to strengthen the impact of their businesses.
From this, it is no wonder that even the Galloman logo is of French origin. The “fleur-de-lys”, or the Bourbon lily, which is perhaps the most French and elegant symbol in the world, is also known as one of the symbols of sophistication. How did Galloman and the lily blossom come together?
Balázs: Fortunately, I am surrounded by many talented co-workers here. I would not be able to create everything. Our logo is certainly elegant and reflects the same spirit I wanted to transmit with our brand name. But the credit goes to our designer here, Tamas. I just encouraged and approved his ideas.
WE UNDERSTAND YOUR BUSINESS … AND WE TRANSLATE IT. – What is the main message of this slogan?
Balázs: You know, in the translation business, the standard is to see literature degrees everywhere. I wanted to show something else. It is important to recognise style, and correct writing. But everything we translate is an output of a specific, often technical profession. It is important to show the highest respect possible to these professions by properly adopting their language, and this is where we want to be the best. We have people with various degrees in our workflow – legal, medical, engineering, finance, etc. We work for businesses, and a source text only makes sense when you know how businesses are run in that given industry. We learn every day.
Galloman is also special for the fact that it only works in three languages. Why only French, English and Hungarian? In the future, would you be open to other languages as well?
Balázs: There are temptations regularly. Temptations offering more money, business opportunities, a new clientele etc. But I was serious in my answer to your first question. We have a strategy and I do not see any reason to sacrifice our cultural roots and raison d’ȇtre for the sake of a higher turnover. We know who we want to serve the best. This is already a good challenge for much longer than 10 years! ?
You successfully celebrated a 10-year anniversary with Galloman. If you could have a wish while blowing out the birthday candles, what would it be?
Balázs: Those wishes are meant to remain secrets, right? ? More seriously, my wishes are for my team rather than myself. I want them to feel the same pride as I feel today, after several years with Galloman. To create something that survives and blossom beyond its creators. To create value for society.
Thank you very much!
The interview was made by Mónika Pados-Szabó