When I integrated the Win Link team, I was welcomed by Maria Sanchez, the manager in charge of the project. She is working directly under the commands of Gary Shi, the CEO of Shining Group, and manages a team only made of interns (3 to 5 interns depending on the period). At my arrival another student of the IPAG Business School was already employed, as well as another student, so we were a team of 3 interns. Maria Sanchez is a very nice person, and I did get on well with the other interns, so my integration is this team was easy. I had different missions to achieve, including prospecting client, negociation, visit fairs, contract redaction, market survey…
Working for Win Link wasn’t always easy. We were 4 interns, with a part time manager who didn’t give us clear objectives or tasks. Our only instruction was to find clients, which is very vague. The absence of clear management was discouraging and frustrating for all of us. Because of that, we had to work on our own, taking initiative and develop our autonomy. Then again, the business model created by the Chinese CEO of the company was not appealing (not to say unacceptable) to the potential client. It was really a barrier to our work, because some potential clients would just refuse to sign anything with no risk-sharing policy. Every day, we were confronted to failure to deal with client because of the business model itself, but we couldn’t do anything about it despite our motivation.
I still learn a lot of thing aboout intercultural communication and the importance of good management in a team. During this internship, I was working in a Chinese company, with a Chinese CEO, a Colombian manager, a team of French interns and others Korean, Colombian and Chinese colleagues. Intercultural communication is something I had to learn and deal with every day. I had to adapt to every interlocutor to avoid any misunderstanding. The lack of management is something the intern’s team had to face every day. The Chinese CEO of the company, Mr Shi, would never come to us to discuss aspects of the business or give us precise objectives and tasks. He was really distant and didn’t communicate with us at all. We had to go in his office to have precisions and discussions about our work in the company, when he was available of course. Maria Sanchez was the manager of the team for half my internship. She is a really hard-working person, but she was really missing organizational skills. The other interns and I had trouble working and communicating with her.
Coming to China was for me a real leap in the unknown. I had no idea what to expect before my arrival, but at the end this semester was a complete discovery and I am very glad I had to opportunity to spend some time in China.