I’ve spent the last two days at yet another excellent edition of the XP Days Benelux conference. It was my first time in the Dutch location and I have really enjoyed the area.
Since I walked from the local train station to the conference centre on the way in I decided to do the same on the way back. However, as I was about to leave the grounds strolling along the drive, a car stopped by and the driver kindly offered a lift to the station.
I couldn’t refuse this generous offer and found myself chatting away with the lady who, it turned out, just finished her shift working at the conference centre. She inquired about my stay and the impressions of the location as well as the local food. We had a good chat about the local town and I safely arrived at the local station just in time for an earlier train. She said goodbye and invited me to visit them again next year.
It’s absolutely amazing to experience any such little acts of selfless and genuine help and somehow it made me think about motivation. I spent two days at a conference and at least two sessions I went to discussed employee motivation (and I’m sure many more did too). We kept analysing and exploring what to do to motivate people we work with, how to create the right environment.
Yet clearly we missed an opportunity. We should have also taken some time to observe and talk to the people at the Kappelerput centre. They have clearly created an environment where employees cared about their workplace. I’m sure this would’ve been as valuable lesson as the sessions we run.