As a business woman it is not always easy to get from one meeting to another when you do not have access to a bathroom, WIFI and electricity on a regular basis. Last week I was getting a bit stressed about not finding a bathroom when I needed one. At the same time I did not want to run late for the next meeting.
As soon as I had entered the corporate building I found the bathroom and it seemed like a heavenly relief to me. When I came out a woman stood at the basin washing her hands. It is not the norm in this country to acknowledge another person’s existence in the bathroom but I felt like smiling at her. I was a bit nervous and she smiled as well. This day was different in a good way.
Then I entered the floor of the company and found her sitting at the reception desk. She now acknowledged that we knew each other already and was very kind. Not only did she offer me a coffee. I asked her politely if I could charge my phone. She took it with her to her desk while I was introducing myself to her boss. I probably get a consulting job there. I am sure the receptionist will always remember me now. I do not even know her name but I will ask her next time or bring her some chocolates.
The other day I randomly ran into Judy, my editor when I walked to a bathroom. She had tried to call me and in those few minutes of meeting she helped me get a new client. Her husband came to say hello and introduce himself.
Maybe this just happens because Zurich after all is a village but I do believe that there is a need in our societies for human interaction now. We have grown so distant from other people that a smile can change a person’s mood for a whole day.
Try it once and let me know what happened.