If you ask any China Country Director what his or her biggest challenge is, chances are they will answer talent: finding, onboarding, motivating and retaining star performers. 

The talent landscape in China is complex, explains Mary Rezek in this video, with various trends to watch.  

 

 

Rising Expectations

 

The first thing that might surprise you are inflated titles and salaries in China. 

Mary said: ''I met a 23 year old the other day who wants the title of Vice President because he has 5 years of multinational experience, and he wants a US$ 150,000 salary. I laughed, yet he replied well, somebody else will take me.''

''There is a bit of arrogance and expectation for those who are educated, and they can command that in the market.''

 

'Flexible' Loyalty

 

''It is ok to job-hop between one to two years,' added Mary. ''Then a Chinese will ask him or herself if I am not learning something, if I am not getting what I want,  if I do not have enough money, if I cannot buy the house that I need, if I cannot marry and afford a family, then I need to get another job.'' 

''It is not just about the individual, it is also about the entire family system. There is pressure that behind the scenes which must be considered.''

 

Immense Potential

 

''I have come across incredibly bright people in China, who make me think, and understand things I cannot even conceptualize.'' 

''So the notion that Chinese only copy is perhaps relevant to manufacturing, but I have to say that Gen Y, Gen Z and even people of my generation are very sophisticated thinkers.''  

 

From Rote to Practical Learning

 

''The area that China has to grow into is around application,'' adds Mary. 

''Just because you read and memorize it does not mean that you can use it. How do you think beyond what the book says? How do you challenge thinking and actually create greater understanding through dialogue and difference?''

''That is China’s greatest talent opportunity in my view. It is on its way. There is a lot happening within the educational system and multinational companies are providing that platform, but there is still a lot more work to be done.'' 
 

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