“Nua ned hudln”

Dear readers,

The end of the year is fast approaching, and I’m not usually the one to slow down or take time out during such periods. In my job, there is little room to slow down or take a deep breath. Regardless of the current order situation, I always experience a continuous dynamic, whether at full speed or in quieter phases.

But this year is somehow different. One visit to beautiful Vienna was enough to put me in this special mood. More than twenty years ago, a project for a large electronics company took me to the Austrian capital. I was still a relatively young consultant at the time, and the project left a lasting impression on me. Not only because of the enormous challenges, but also because of the nice key users in the project team, with whom I have kept in touch over the years. This contact has developed into a real friendship and we have been visiting each other regularly for several years now.

So last weekend I was in Vienna with my family to enjoy the pre-Christmas glow of Austria’s capital. During a meal in a small restaurant in the 3rd district, I noticed the slogan “Nua ned hudln” (“Don’t hudl”), which the friendly owner wore on his plain black polo shirt. My Austrian is just enough to order a few beers and some food, but the saying was foreign to me. When I asked him about this, he explained to me that this was the motto of his restaurant and meant “just don’t get into a rush”.

I realized exactly what he meant when I watched him at work. He took time for all the guests, played briefly with the children, explained the menu in detail and thought with us about which wine would go well with our chosen dishes. Even when the food was served, he took his time to explain what was on the plate.

You might be thinking: “That’s part of his job.” You’re certainly right. But be honest: how often do you experience such attentive service today? How often have you been served by staff who have little idea of what they’re doing, who barely take the time for their guests and who are unable to make sensible recommendations?

Since that evening, this beautiful Austrian saying has stuck with me. “Nua ned hudln” somehow sounds more charming than “just don’t get hectic”. It has something sweet, perhaps even cute, and it reminds me a little of a vacation in the mountains. Maybe that’s why this saying has stuck in my mind.

I have resolved to “hudln” a little less in the near future and, just like the aforementioned landlord, take more time for my loved ones and my projects. This will perhaps lead to me charging myself a little less, but tackling the issues I do with a little less stress and more attention to detail. In these days, shortly before Christmas, that seems to me to be a thought well worth having.

I wish you beautiful, relaxing and restful days with your loved ones and please don’t let yourselves be “hudln”.

Best regards

Yours, Dirk Ungerechts

Picture of Dirk Ungerechts

Dirk Ungerechts

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