An opening meeting of the EMPIRIAE – URBAN HUMAN RESOURCES / STAFFING Experience Exchange Network was organised in Cieszyn on 7 and 8 June, the group focusing on issues associated with broadly defined urban human resources.

The meeting was organised by the Association of Polish Cities as part of the “Local Development”
Programme financed by the European Economic Area Financial Mechanism for the years 2014-2021. The Programme’s multiple tasks include the development of an Experience Exchange Network (EEN) for project participants and any other interested cities and towns.

The group was warmly welcomed by municipal authorities of Cieszyn on 7 June, inimitable master of narrative and expert on the history of Cieszyn Stanisław Kawecki – town secretary attending the gathering – leading Network participants across town, and offering shelter from the storm in the historic townhall building.

Originally comprising 7 cities and towns – “Local Development” Programme beneficiaries – the Network was represented in Cieszyn by participants from 5 cities, a total of 17 persons attending the meeting in an excellent boost to the integration tempo and general discussion climate. Representatives of Cieszyn (host town) Jarosław, Nisko, Zawiercie and Żywiec working to develop a future meetings schedule were joined by further two municipalities after the meeting.

In embarking upon teamwork, meeting participants decided that specific issues (themes of the first and – primarily – successive conventions) would be agreed on in consensus. And that was exactly what happened. The most essential direction was duly identified in the course of a discussion followed by workshop sessions from among a vast and difficult to unambiguously define array of themes comprising municipal and Local Government Unit human resources management, workload organising, and work efficiency improvement and staff motivation strategies. EEN members decided that issues concerning work-related satisfaction would be recognised as the priority. It was further agreed that specific matters (chosen topics for subsequent meetings and online discussions) would be submitted to the entire group for approval after 20 July.

As suitably and ostensibly recognised by all Urban Human Resources / Staffing EEN members, the group’s strength lies in its enormous diversity. It affords an opportunity for identifying and comprehending shared problems, optimum solutions proposed as a result. This is made possible through mutual trust and complete openness of all EEN group work participants.