EWMBA students Tiffany Barbour, Ketaki Gangal, Benjamin Kim, and Jaimin Patel are currently in Beijing, China, working on an International Business Development (IBD) project with CreditEase. EWMBA student Leanne Chu is managing the offshore project operations in Los Angeles, CA and San Francisco, CA.
Our mission was to help CreditEase understand the Wealth Management (WM) industry in the U.S., and develop an implementable strategic framework recommendation for offshore investment by CreditEase target customers using U.S.-based investment vehicles. After six weeks of intense research and interviews with industry experts in the U.S., we were ecstatic to finally be in Beijing!
A Day In The Life…
We started each morning with a call to sync up the Beijing and US teams, discuss the learning and findings from the previous day, as well as plan our next steps. Work life in the Beijing office was very similar to the U.S., except the workday typically started around 9:30a. Once the office doors opened, though, it was off to the races with product team meetings and client conference calls scheduled throughout the day and usually in different buildings across the city. No need to go to the gym… these walks definitely kept us fit.
Team interviews with various product team leads and current WM customers.
Meeting with the product teams and current customers for an hour at a time was so illuminating. Every conversation seemed to double our learning, which helped us generate new insights and even better ideas for the market entry strategy.
Team photo in our cubicles.
Between meetings, we would spend time at our cubicles debriefing the previous meeting, formulating new ideas, and connecting with our nearby neighbors from the Corporate Strategy team.
The Country and Culture
Even though the project kept us continually busy, we managed to find time to take in the sights, learn the history of China, and of course enjoy the delicious cuisine.
Jaimin and Ben at the Great Wall of China at Mutianyu.
Team photo in front of entrance to the Forbidden City.
Delicious lunch spread in a local restaurant.
We also took some time to enjoy a traditional tea ceremony…
… and then learned how silk is made.
Team photo with our hosts: Bing, Kelly, and Meichen.
Our overall goal was to wow the client, and we did just that! The senior management in attendance for the final presentation were highly engaged, asked lots of questions, were genuinely impressed by our ideas. If you had asked any of us about Wealth Management, Fintech, or CreditEase two months ago, there would have been a number of blank stares. Now, we feel like experts in training and are eagerly awaiting the day when we can invest with CreditEase in the U.S.!