Shanghai

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We got on the train to Beijing at 7am and are going through the outskirts of Gobi Desert. It is half past three and as you can imagine steaming hot and dusty in the cabin. Fortunately this ride only takes 31 hours. I’m already looking forward to the stop at the Mongolian-Chinese border where you can experience the bogie-changes of the wagons.

During that process and the passport check we weren’t allowed to leave the train. In total the stop at the border and on both sides lasts about 4 hours and we were only allowed to get off the train for about half an hour to be buy some daily necessities (beer). As I can only repeat myself this ride was the worst one in terms of our body conditions and the unbearable heat in the wagons. Some French friends of us even fainted during the train ride and had to undergo medical observation afterwards. The happier we were as we eventually arrived in Beijing.

北京 (Beijing)

We got out of train withdrew Chinese money, bought SIM-cards for our mobiles and walked to the LEO courtyard hostel which is located close to Qian Men (southwards of Tian’An Men Square) right in the middle of Beijing. It’s a great place to experience the characteristics of the survived still lively Hutongs and dive into Chinese culture and habits. We enjoyed our stay in Beijing although it was my third time there and thus the sights and places we visited were mostly redundant to me. Nevertheless I always accompanied the guys apart from one day when I revisited my colleagues at the office I worked for last summer. In the meantime they went to the summer palace by themselves.

上海 (Shanghai)

Now, after a week in the capital city of China Martin and me ended up on the train to Shanghai. The three of us had to separate, as there were complications to get three tickets for the same train. Philip didn’t mind though to stay two more nights in Beijing as he has more time in Shanghai than Martin anyways. I’m currently facing the challenge of finding a room for one month in Shanghai. Yesterday and on the train so far I was mainly on the phone digging out old connections to colleagues and friends in SH and crying for help basically.

I eventually found a place to stay though in Jing’An, a fairly central district. It takes me about an hour by public transportation to get to Fudan nevertheless. This Monday my student life here took off again, so future entries might be limited 😉 The basically exiting part of my journey is over anyways (not that SH isn’t exiting). I’m focusing on taking my chinese to the next level during the next three weeks even though having a tax law exam waiting for me as soon as I arrive back to Vienna.

Photos: EXPO 2010

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In order to revisit some of my former Tongji University colleagues I went to Shanghai for 5 days from 11th to 15th September 2009. I mainly want the facebook-pictures to tell the story in that case, as this time for me was relaxing rather than sight-seeing intense… In general I appreciated this trip to a very special place although it’s getting torn apart at the moment due the upcoming expo 2010. The city seems to prepare exclusively for this extraordinary event and puts all emphasis to it. On Tuesday I had the chance to visit the Urban Planning Museum on Peoples Square. I learned that China is the first ‘developing’ country having the burden and at the same time special honor to host a world exposition.

Shanghai, of course, seems to be the perfectly sophisticated place for it!

century park

A Shanghai Chapter…

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Brief Introduction

As globalization these days is thriving and therefore markets converging it is vital to understand the development of different involved countries from the present perspective as well as the retrospective. That is why fruitful future progresses can possibly only be foreseen through the knowledge of former times. As this topic is too extensive the elaboration will start with a brief historical review of the Era of Reconstruction mainly influenced by Deng Xiaoping beginning in 1976.

Not much attention will be paid to the Mao Zedong Era including the Great Leap Forward which is regarded as the first try to transform China mainland from a primary agrarian economy into a modern and industrialized country. Rather the Era of Reconstruction under Deng Xiaoping and its partial economical opening-up process towards the rest of the World and especially towards the United States in the beginning will be taken into consideration.

As China currently is on the brink of transformation from an elongated workbench as an emerging country to an advanced country it is essential to foresee the further development of the potential China of tomorrow by applying the knowledge from the last decades. The investigation of former economical achievements and upcoming challenges of China’s economy will be consulted to find a proper conclusion for the recent development.

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Download the whole Paper:

Case for Understanding China Today & Foreseeing China Tomorrow

(2009 | copyright reserved)

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Job-related

As I already alluded to my internship at Lenzing Fibers Shanghai in recent posts I would like to go into further detail concerning job-related tasks by this post.

My presentation in .pdf f.y.r.: michael-eichinger-in-shanghai

After I gave the staff at LFS a short ppt presentation about myself, family, friends, hobbies, Austria and its geographical core position in Europe (respectively to emerging markets in CEE), my studies and the little trading company (ODEM | www.odem.eu) my mother set up in Austria, I immediately received my Chinese nickname 小麦 (xiaomai: little Mike). That’s tradition in China to address the daughter or son with the prefix 小 (xiao: little). Similarly the parent generation receives the prefix 老 (lao: old (respectfully speaking)). To give an example my father would be called “laodi” (Dieter Eichinger).
The nickname mainly originated from Peter Gao who is responsible for the Sales at LFS.

He introduced me to the Business Plan and vision of the office and we also discussed differences between the ways of doing business in China and Europe. As it is a short time for me joining LFS he integrated me into an existing project which is all about customer acquisition to be precise developer acquisition. So my tasks will consist of supporting Aurora (responsible for Marketing) in customer visits and the following reporting. This is quite interesting especially for me as it enables the opportunity of seeing different places even outside of Shanghai and getting a glimpse of doing business in China.
This topic, precisely the comparison of the two different management styles of course needs deeper research and further elaboration. If workload allows it I will manifest my observations and go into more detail.

View from the office building (23rd floor) not far away from the People’s Square.

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…on Wednesday morning at Pu Dong Airport, which serves as the International Airport for Shanghai. I got immediately picked up by a driver sent by the Lenzing office and was brought to my apartment where I’ll live for the next weeks. This is by the way a luxurious 92 sqm loft on the 15th floor with a beautiful view to the Bund.

Balcony view

Balcony view

(The picture was taken yesterday night after 11 p.m when the flashy lights usually are already gone.)

After checking into my apartment I got a call from Maggie, one of the marketing girls of the LFS (Lenzing Fibers Shanghai) to have some lunch together. I additionally got to know Aurora who is also working at the office. She showed me the Bund at night and helped me to buy a chinese cell phone (+8613818350440).

To sum up, this was my first day in a whole new world which actually already started in Fürstenfeld / Styria at 7 a.m. when my family brought me to Vienna airport. I left Vienna to Frankfurt at 11 a.m. and had a 5 hours stay there before departing to Pudong Airport / Shanghai, which could have been a more pleasant flight. But I finally made it and I’m lucky to stay for half a year not to repeat that kind of torture too early. Just kidding… 😉

oak in front of the Bund

oak in front of the Bund

Today, after having troubles with the network driver of my notebook back at the apartment and also at the office, I mainly spent my time in the office. After lunch Aurora took me to a customer meeting where she presented the LFS. As you could probably imagine – in Chinese. Thank god I already knew the mainpart of the Lenzing slides.

The good thing is that I nearly didn’t suffer any jetleg although I could hardly catch any sleep on the plane. So far I really enjoy the atmosphere here in Shanghai and I’ll try to further explore it during the next week with the opportunity of living virtually at the center of this huge business place.

I hope that you appreciate being kept up-2-date in form of this blog!

再见 (zai jian),

Mike

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