As we roll closer and closer to the ‘conservation season,’ the crew leaders, myself included, are having lots of discussions about leadership, service, and motivation.  What motivates us to lead? What motivates us to serve?

Without trying to sound cynical, I would posit that no one serves simply for the good in and of itself. Perhaps I should amend that. I think it is a very rare person, if they exist at all, who serves simply because they think it is a moral good.  After all, isn’t doing something to reap the moral gratification of an action self-service.

But I digress and get way too far off into theoretical and philosophical thinking…

What I mean to get to, in plain speak, is how much I admire the WCC’s initiate to serve and benefit its employees.  There is a reciprocity here.  This doesn’t just exist in the form of education days. At the WCC there is a sincere and heartfelt notion that all employees should learn, grow emotionally, gain employable skills, make connections with land management agencies and non-profits, and so on.

Already, one month into the WCC, I have gained an immense amount of medical knowledge in a WFR course.  I have learned how to frame a tiny house (see our forthcoming tool shed!).  I’ve gained important skill sets regarding conflict resolution and environmental ethics.  I know myself better than I did a month ago, and infinitely less than I expect to when we wrap things up in the Fall.

By serving WCC, I am being served in return. I won’t just be pulling weeds, dusting prairie dog colonies, or dropping trees.  I will be transforming myself through learning, training, and responding to daily challenges.  Feels good to take care of our beautiful state, and to be taken care of in return.

Keep Your Stick on the Ice,


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