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“Wang believes it is only when workers are treated as innovators that they can perform original work and achieve excellence.”

and next step because China is already capable of providing power for 400 million cars a year,” explained Wang in an interview. Since late 2015, the government has issued a series of policies designed to encourage the development of new energy vehicles, boosting market confidence for the sector. “The government has given new energy a high strategic position. This is a good opportunity. We have a dream, and the state has given a high degree of support,” said Wang.

Respect for employees

battery production. We will scale this business, as well as continue to drive research and development of battery science, making pure electric vehicles more competitive,” said Wang.

Government support Speaking of his company’s expansion, Wang Chuanfu made it clear that government policies have loaded the dice in favour of his business. In response to the deteriorating air quality, the Chinese government set up audacious targets for skyrocketing electric and hybrid car production. BYD seemed poised to deliver on that promise and reap the profits for years to come. “We are living on wheels, socially and privately, and the market demand for cars in China approximates to 500 million. If one car burns two tons of oil annually, 500 million cars will consume 1 billion tons of oil. Of China’s total oil use, 56.7% – 160 million tons – is imported. We can hardly buy so much even if it’s affordable. Therefore, electric cars are the best choice

Unlike many Chinese companies who have been stereotypically perceived as copycats – the word has almost become synonymous with China’s tech scene over the past decade – BYD is regarded as an innovative Chinese company. This can be attributed to the CEO’s keen interest in original research and great respect for his workers, especially technicians and engineers. From the very beginning, Wang Chuanfu was determined to do away with the superstition that China’s human resource could only win as cheap, lowskilled labour force. In Wang’s opinion, if the employees are simply treated as workers and expected to carry out repetitive tasks, then they can only deliver mediocre results. It is only when they are treated as innovators that they can perform original work and achieve excellence. The company tries to create comfortable working and living conditions for its employees. In 2000, the headquarters in Shenzhen built a self-contained BYD village, providing cheap residences for the staff. The company also provides free meals for each employee, and organizes various training and team-building activities to construct effective communication channels. It has invested a large amount of money in constructing a cultural and sports facility to enrich the staff ’s work-life balance. It even has its own school that provides cheap education to staff children. Furthermore, BYD provides zero-yuan first payment and allowance for employees to buy its self-developed cars. All these measures echo Wang’s management philosophy that happy employees perform the best.

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Making It: Industry for Development #21