11 PM. I’m lying in bed on the 19th floor, while looking over the city of Beijing. While reflecting on the past two days of being in China, I am thinking: “Wow what an experience, and how privileged am I to be in this position!” Right away my thoughts are going out to our King Willem Alexander and Queen Maxima, whom I was able to demonstrate our interactive football wall to earlier today. In my speech I said it is truly “a dream come true!”, after which I explained how the Yalp Sutu works, and why we’ve developed it.
That “why” is something we often forget to mention, while this is actually really interesting. Why do you do the things you do? Why am I here?
Of course I am doing this for the sake of business. We need the turnover in order to make a return on our investments in the R&D. But there’s also something else that fuels me. The adventure, the unexpected, and the positive vibe I get to carry around all day. I follow that energy, and this has taken me to China. Over there they want to move ahead, progress, and grow. They are hungry for knowledge, and for innovation.
They invest, build, and get things done. I like this, because I like to move ahead as well. I would like to continue developing, and take action. I often miss that drive in The Netherlands. We complain a lot, and want to keep things as they “used to be.” In an ever changing world, that is simply not possible. Everything changes, and that is certain.
Is everything better in China? No, of course not! The Netherlands are great, and the air is clean (it’s a different story over here!), and we have great facilities; eventhough we often fail to realise it. A good example of this is elderly care. In The Netherlands we often complain about these, but during this trade mission there are severage of these elderly care organisations, which export knowledge, services and products about senior care to China. Not only in China, but also many other countries they see the Dutch senior care system as the most advanced in the world. Looking at our own issues through this international perspective allows me to see two things: Our issues not only seem to get smaller, but even carry greater opportunity than previously perceived. New opportunities are exciting and fun. On the other hand they can be daunting and difficult. Also this is a perspective I’d like to share with you. The investments into China are still not returned by a long shot. So besides the adventure it ultimately comes down to hard work. A LOT of hard work.
Managing Director and Owner of Yalp