China: Around The Nation

Boss ventures into China’s deep southwest to deliver New Year’s greetings to his staff

Lin Zhigang, from coastal Zhejiang province, makes a point of visiting his workforce – many of whom are related – at their remote homes

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 05 February, 2017, 5:48pm
UPDATED : Sunday, 05 February, 2017, 5:48pm

A Zhejiang province factory boss traversed 5,000km to deliver his Lunar New Year greetings to employees who hail from the southwestern hinterlands, the Qinjiang Evening News reported.

Most of his 100-plus employees at the leather goods business are from Sichuan and Yunnan provinces.

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Owner Lin Zhigang decided he should trace their footsteps and visit their home villages after he last made the Spring Festival trek four years ago.

At daybreak on Lunar New Year day, Lin filled the tank of his Land Rover and embarked on the road trip from Haining with his driver and human resources manager.

Lin, who founded his business in 2014, has seen most of his workers coming from the same villages.

“My company never needed to recruit because my long-timers have brought over their relatives, making for a very stable, reliable workforce,” said Lin, brimming with pride. “Many of my younger workers have since paired off with their colleagues and raised families. So now there are scores of couples among them. It’s like one big family.”

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His first stop was Guangan in Sichuan province. After driving for 17 hours, Lin arrived after 11pm. One of his long-time employees was waiting for him at the door and had dinner ready. Together with his family, Lin was regaled with a midnight feast.

Along the way, Lin said he was overwhelmed by the hospitality of villagers and saw for himself the hardships that his employees’ families live with in the countryside.

Lin’s last stop was a village nestled in the hills of Qujing, Yunnan province to visit quality-control inspector Zhou Xiangcheng, who joined the factory five years ago on his sister’s recommendation. The villagers were awed by the arrival of a Land Rover – and a factory boss who paid personal visits.