Saturday, April 13, 2024

Dong Mingzhu: Cool Head, Strong Will

With her visionary strategies, unwavering determination, and innovative mindset, Dong has not only steered Gree Electric to remarkable success but has also emerged as an inspiring role model for aspiring entrepreneurs worldwide.

Originally featured in Passions Vol. 56, this content has been adapted for digital consumption here exclusively on VOICE OF ASIA.

Dong Mingzhu’s male business rivals have been noted to say, “When she (Dong) chews you up, she doesn’t even spit out the bones.” In a way, it is a left-handed compliment to a woman whose famous no-nonsense approach and determination enabled her to turn Gree into the world’s largest air-conditioner manufacturer by sales volume (at the time). It has been a remarkable journey for Dong, who rose up the ranks from being a salesperson. During her early years, in a move akin to peddling ice to Eskimos, she managed to sell air-conditioners at full price during a particularly cold spell in China, while other competitors were undercutting theirs. As President, she introduced innovations such as a six-year free servicing contract in return for up-front payment from retailers, resulting in a win-win situation, while employee loyalty was secured with higher-than-industry-average wages.

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