Categories : China China Recruitment - Getting Good People Leadership Team Development

high cost China hiring

Independence Day lights in the darkness

Let’s look at really high cost China hiring.

I am hoping we can give you a Happy Independence Day light in the dark from a real story where I have changed some details but not the point.   I am not here trying to blame any ethnic group, All cultures have some good and some bad hires.

Is your business doing well in China?

I guess you have never considered that that might mean you are harboring a leader who is costing you lots of money that you cannot see clearly?

In 2007, we were helping a company place a Marketing Manager  in Beijing when my assistant who was visiting with me overheard the recently placed ops manager say to the purchasing manager, “Just agree with these Brits, they will be called back home soon, and we can do what we want”. My assistant passed that on to me, and I went to the British GM to help him see the problem. He had worked so hard to get that guy and was too busy to even think about what I said. The world economy went bad in 2008, and all the Brits did suddenly get called home.

When the sales in China started to soar everyone celebrated. Industry changes in 2014 led to placing a Westerner in the factory again after 6 years without.  The Westerner was confused as numbers never matched and decisions at meetings would not be implemented, One year later he was able to get to the bottom of one corrupt world. Untold inefficiency had been hiding for 8 years. In 2016, the ops manager was thrown out, and the company had to pay 10 months severance to let this wasteful and lying man go. Several other managers under him had to go as he had hired people who would protect him and be loyal to him rather than do great work. This story repeats itself countless times across China.

High Cost China Hiring


If you take all the expenses of their China operation over 9 years and subtract 10% from the all costs, you have some sense of how much money that guy cost them. Further, they paid that guy top dollar and then severance after 9 years. I also do not know that they paid that international head hunter who made the placement of the ops manager.

That’s a lot of money in a high tech 400 person Western factory. It did not have to occur. If we had made the hire, he never would have made the second round of interviews.

Any similar stories you want to tell?

 Posted on : July 4, 2016
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