‘I’ve learned to adapt, and to analyse issues from others’ perspectives. On several occasions, we patiently negotiated in order to identify methods which could be agreed upon by both the management and workers, to increase efficiency.’
Vietnam factory stint gives intern a vital skills boost
Despite being a major in applied social studies, Debbie Kong willingly accepted the challenge of an internship placement at a factory in Hai Phong City, Vietnam, owned by EVA Precision Industrial Holdings Limited. The internship programme named “YIC x OUHK Internship Programme in Newly Industrialized Country – Vietnam” was organised by OUHK and supported by the Hong Kong Young Industrialists Council.
The internship turned out to be an eye-opening experience for Kong. “In the six-week, well-structured internship programme, I received exposure to different departments, including production schedule planning, component sourcing, and internal production planning,” she says.
Initially, she encountered difficulties, such as the technical jargon involved and her lack of basic knowledge about business management. “Luckily, I received extraordinary support from the seniors in the company, who took the time to give me step-by-step guidance,” Kong recalls. “Another challenge was communicating with native Vietnamese workers. Sometimes we had to rely on assistance from the translators. This exposed me to the cultural differences one might encounter in a workplace. I’ve learned to adapt, and to analyse issues from others’ perspectives. On several occasions, we patiently negotiated in order to identify methods which could be agreed upon by both the management and workers, to increase efficiency.”
“I also accompanied staff to business meetings with clients from Japan and observed the appropriate business etiquette,” Kong notes. “This internship placement has benefited me tremendously. I have not only picked up practical technical knowledge of production, but also learned about essential interpersonal skills, communication with individuals from diverse cultural backgrounds, and the appropriate attitude at work.”
Kong was pleasantly surprised to discover that she actually enjoyed working in industrial production. “The most memorable experience for me was spending time observing production in the factory,” she says. “I have become more confident in myself. I have come to realise that I don’t need to limit my career options. I can try opportunities in the business or manufacturing sectors, if they are available.”
(Source: Classified Post, SCMP)