Thursday 8 December 2016

And So The Adventure Begins: My first month in Zhuhai

Hi there! My name is Annelies Porreij, hailing from a speck of dust on the world map called The Netherlands. My first month here at ODM was an amazing rollercoaster filled with learning new things and adventures in South China.

Zhuhai view

This is not my first trip to China. I studied in Beijing twice in 2012 and 2014 as a part of my Dutch university major: a Business major with Mandarin Chinese. My previous experiences in China made the transition back into China life and adapting to my surroundings a lot easier. Places like Shanghai and Xi'an have also been ticked off my list, but this is my first time in the south of China.

So far my experience has been great. Zhuhai is a relatively small and green coastal city (especially for me, being used to a huge city like Beijing) and it even has clean air! There's a tropical climate in this part of China, and it almost feels surreal to see palm trees everywhere every day.
It's August, so it's still summer so the weather is very hot and humid. It's raining a lot with an occasional typhoon threat here and there.

Zhuhai Palace

The work at ODM is fast paced and never boring. There are many facets to my daily tasks, from which I am learning so much. After one month, I'm finally getting more used to how things work. My colleagues are all incredibly friendly, passionate people and I felt very welcomed. I'm receiving intensive but interesting training about the ins and outs of this industry.

Zhuhai - Opera House

After my first week, I had the wonderful opportunity to visit Yangshuo: famous for their landscape appearance on the ¥20 note. This was a trip that had been on my bucketlist for many years already. It was still a solid 7 hours by bus (+2h because of technical issues, don't even get me started) but the trip was well worth it. The landscapes are beautiful, there is so much to see and to do that 2 days wasn't really enough.

Exciting times lie ahead. I'm looking forward to learning even more and getting more experience in the next three and a half months that I have left. Let's do this!

ODM is opening a new office in Vietnam. Join the team for an amazing work and cultural experience!

Friday 4 November 2016

Office expansion in Cebu, Philippines

ODMasia has expanded its operations in early 2016 to the Philippines where we currently employing graphic & industrial designers and cold callers. We are constantly looking to add people to our office and work together with our Filipino staff.

Cebu is an Island located in the middle of the Philippines and is a really cultural but beautiful place with beaches, you expect from the Philippines and Indonesia. The water is blue and the world under the water is as wild as above. Sharks, turtles and corals. A paradise for diver and people who love to go into the nature after work.

The life in Cebu is not as touristy, as you might expect from this area of the world, but this also makes the place really interesting and you can really fall into the Filipino culture. The good thing about the Filipino culture is that nearly everyone is able to speak English, which will make your life much easier than in China for example.

Cebu has a lot of tourist attractions. one of it is this Fort San Pedro, which was a military defence base, built by spain. It's located in the area called "Plaza Independencia" which is a busy place, where people hang out and enjoy their free time after work. This place is perfect for meeting people, who are living in Cebu City.

Also worth to see is this street, as this is the oldest street in Cebu City and is just full of culture and will give you an idea about how people live in the Philippines.

Mango and rice is the most traditional food on Cebu and is just delicious and healthy. The fruits and other dishes are all oriented to healthy food with a lot of fruits.

Enjoy your weekends in Cebu with kayaking, swimming with sharks and dolphins and go whale watching around the coast of Cebu.

We are constantly looking for new staff to help us develop our Philippines operations and manage our local team.  Please do get in touch if this might be something you are interested in.

Friday 26 August 2016

My Month in China!

I arrived in Zhuhai at around 9pm on the last ferry from Hong Kong. It had already been a long journey from Manchester, with a stopover in Dubai, so I am very glad to have arrived. My room was not ready when I arrived, but the guys at Intern China were amazing and I stayed in a hotel for my first night in Zhuhai!

My Month in China!
Zhuhai is definitely one of the most beautiful cities. It is not what I expected China to be like. It is definitely more slowly paced that I expected, with so much greenery and nature.

The day after my arrival, which was a Sunday, I went along my first InternChina event. I met up with some of the other interns at a Beijing Opera Mask painting. It was a lot of fun and a great first introduction for me to Zhuhai and China.

Beijing Mask Painting
I also experienced my first typhoon which was interesting. It actually began on my first day at work. It started with torrential rain, thunder and lightning. The next day the Chinese government announced a code red warning, and we all had to stay at home. So that was quite eventful!

I also went on a trip to Guangzhou with Intern China. It was one of the most unforgettable experiences of my life. We visited so many interesting landmarks in Guangzhou including Lotus Hill Park, Temple of the Six Banyan Trees, Shamian Park and Baiyun Shan as well.

Lotus Hill Park - Guangzhou
Temple of the Six Banyan Trees - Guangzhou
One of the most memorable events was the Night Cruise along the Pearl River. It was an extremely beautiful night, and I managed to get a lot of great pictures.
Night Cruise - Guangzhou
Night Cruise - Guangzhou
My internship has been amazing. My main role is in marketing, and my focus when I first started was writing articles for the main ODM blog. This was a very new for me as I have never written a blog, and now I have picked up a new skill set. I am also doing a lot of work in social media management which includes running one of the Twitter accounts, as well as lots of different types of admin work which has given me a lot of insight into the business and industry.

Thank you so much ODM for this internship, it has been great getting to know you all and I will not forget this experience! And thank you Intern China for this immense opportunity, it really has been life changing!

Thursday 25 August 2016

Hi there,

It's me again. The first month of my internship at The ODM Group is nearly over and I am enjoying it a lot.
In my everyday life in the office I already got some responsibilities for Clients, writing Blogs and Tweets and have always something to do, which I love.
Other interns here in Zhuhai are just hanging around in their companies and spend their day on Youtube and Facebook, but not in mine. We have a lot to do and we never get bored and if so, we are playing ping pong on the desk in the meeting room.

Yesterday I got the opportunity to go to a factory in Dongguan, which is north of Shenzhen, for quality control on a current project of one of our clients.
Me checking the goods at the Factory
It has been a great experience to have a look on this factory, even though it was very very hot and Hume, which makes it a challenge to keep a cool head.
At the Factory: The Factory owner took me out for Lunch before doing the quality control and a nice dinner afterwards, before I got back to Zhuhai. The quality control basically was, as you may could guess, to have a look, if these goods are as high quality as our clients expects them to be.

I'm looking forward to all the tasks, which are waiting for me, here in Zhuhai at The ODM Group.

I will keep you updated.

Kind regards,


Thursday 11 August 2016

First days in Zhuhai, China

Hi there,

I'm Phillip, 21 years old and from Germany. I study Management and Sales for trading companies at the University of applied sciences of Heilbronn in my third year. Currently I just started my 6 month internship at the ODM Group.

I just arrived in Zhuhai 6 days ago and I'm still curios about this place, trying to figuring stuff out.

It's my first time in Asia and I had no idea, what I should expect of Asia or China, but I'm glad I did this. At first I was shocked by this culture and this way of life, but now it is pretty good and I do feel safe in this city.

I already experienced a lot in my first days: asian food, chinese taxi drivers and some hikes through the city and thorugh the chinese jungle outside of Zhuhai with other Interns of Internchina (IC).
I arrived on a Friday and went on that Saturday after that to the hike with IC.

We had a lot of fun at the hike and in the water of the waterfall, even though we didn't found it. It was very hot, probably between 35 and 40°C, we hiked for about 3 hours, which wasn't planned  but gave us the reason, why we enjoyed the pool of the waterfall so much more.  And the nature was great too. I really loved it.

After that the IC organized a great KTV (Chinese karaoke) which was so much fun with the other interns.

The work at the ODM Group is great too. They are a great team with nice people. I really do enjoy it and can strongly recommend to start an internship at the ODM Group and to talk with the IC, as they are providing a great service.

Monday 8 August 2016

My Experience Abroad Internship and Last Month in Zhuhai.

Now, it's the end of my internship and I can say with confidence that it was really exciting and adventurous experience. Need to say that here at the ODM Group I had got so many new knowledge and skills which I will surely need in my future work life. I learned how to write promotional blog’s, how to make pricing and invoice and find the best product for our clients. Due to this internship I improved my communication skills (how to deal with some not very polite clients). Besides I become better photographer and photoshoper even.

All this will be impossible without great marketing, sales, design and merchandising team. Here at ODM I understood what means the great team work, due to participation in some brainstorm meetings. These guys will always support you and give you advice how best to proceed in a given situation.

Thanks to different tasks every day I was wondering something new and this is really inspires. Three month ago I even can’t imagine I will know so many details about the ways of branding and packaging!

This internship period passed really quickly as I took a chance to travel through the South China. I was visiting the most popular Zhuhai town sights. I was wondered by New Yuan Ming Palace (as I finally found something which looks traditionally Chinese).

And it’s hard to believe but I found fancy place where there was no one but me. Believe me, when you are living in China you begin to consider yourself a sociopath.
Zhuhai locates close to Hong Kong, Macau, Shenzhen and Guangzhou. That’s why it is worth to spare your free time on traveling. Fortunately I have visited Macau and Guangzhou. Considering the fact that I am from Russia these cities become the parallel universe for me. That’s why I was really glad to take a chance to work in ODM office which based in Zhuhai.

These cities are great for travelling’s. Due to this I had chance to make sure that China is the country of contrasts and everyone can find here something what he or she likes. The fact that I was never driving crazy about Asia and China at all and it was really difficult for me to take a fancy to China. But thanks to ODM guys I didn’t have to dream about going home every minute of my staying in China.

Friday 1 July 2016

All Good Things Come to an End - Finishing my Internship

Although this will not be my last time in China, my time in Zhuhai has come to an end (for now), and what an experience this half of my year abroad has been. I can say for sure that I have became more confident in myself, my surroundings and in everything I didn't think I was capable of with working in China an enriched experience and a memorable one at that.

I have had both ups and downs here; my phone getting stolen, impossible to get on crowded buses and constantly being bitten by mosquitoes isn't ideal for starters.. but I have met some amazing people and friends along the way.

I'm very lucky to have spent my time here living with a Chinese family, and can proudly say that I have got a fourth little sister. They have introduced me to some amazing people, families and connections who will not easily be forgotten, letting me create lifetime memories, practice my Chinese and acquire the feeling of knowing that I will see them again next year! 

Although I haven't had the chance to travel as much as I had hoped, I did get the chance to re-visit Hong Kong, go to 海陵岛,and I finally got to visit Guilin, and Yangshuo (with the rain)! Macau will have to wait till next year though.. Here I was able to relive my memories of being by the seaside, eat the best honey ribs, finally eat Lychee (after waiting already for 3 years) and try some of the best seafood, oh and of course getting to appreciate how beautiful China can be away from the buzz of the city life. 

Furthermore, my time at ODM has been an opener to the real working world and how I want my career pathway to be in the future. To be frank when first arriving I wasn't very confident and lacked in certain aspects. Now, I feel that I can deal with problems and achieve goals using the essential skills and experiences that ODM have given me. Sales, marketing, sourcing and project management have all formed a major role in my abilities that I can utilise as my journey continues.

All good things must come to an end they say, but good things never have to end if you don't let them. My positive working experiences will continue to fuel my motivation, and my relationship with my home stay family will never be forgotten (have to see my sister grow up!). I would advise anyone out there regardless of where, to come to China or any other country and learn something new, it changes you and for the better. 

Monday 20 June 2016

My First month in Zhuhai

Zhuhai is a very beautiful city, and despite the fact that in China is always trying to save space there are several huge parks, where you can stay all day thanks to a well-maintained infrastructure.
Seafront park
The city is very comfortable for life it is have many attractions, shops and small Chinese cafes at every step, here you will never be hungry.The number of dishes in Chinese cuisine is enormous, you can try every day something new, but it is important to clarify is it spicy or not, if you cannot stand spicy food. Due to the favorable locaton of the city there is a lot of seafood. You could also buy it on the huge seafood market and cook by yourself. I was pleasantly surprised by the variety of seafood.
Fisher girl
Necessarily places to visit in Zhuhai are Fisher Girl, the seafront and The New Yuan Ming Palace. 
Zhuhai Waterfalls
But I would also advise to visit The Three Waterfalls that are located in a quiet location close to the Huafa district. Despite the fact that we have spent a lot of time trying to find this place, we were not disappointed because of these great views.
Zhuhai Waterfalls
The work at the ODM Group is incredibly interesting. When you need work in an international company using non-native language you do not have any time to relax. In addition, I have never wrote blogs, and especially blogs about promotional products, so from the beginning it was all new for me.

A new country, new culture and way of life is so exciting, that I don’t even have time to be bored. Therefore, the first month passed quickly. I can say with confidence that this specific experience you can get only in China.

Thursday 19 May 2016

Finishing My Internship And A fantastic Experience

Well my time in China has come to an end and what an amazing time it’s been. I’ve met so many great people along the way who have inspired and developed me as a person. I can honestly say it has been the best decision I have ever made and looking back at the nerves I had when I stepped on the plane seemed ridiculous.

I have seen so many things that I never would have at home, like 40 people all cramming into one bus or a fish market with tropical animals that look like they should be from an aquarium. I've seen some of the most beautiful views, cities and islands I could possibly imagine all within hours of my home.

I’ve eaten some of the tastiest food and some of the not so tasty like chicken feet. I've learnt how to speak enough mandarin to have a basic discussion as well as even tell the time. I’ve experienced so much in my short time here and wish it wouldn't end. I've even gotten up and played at an open mic night because hey, when in China do as the Chinese do and sing. 

My time at ODM has been a real eye opener to what I want to do with regards to business and employment as well as giving me the essential skills needed to achieve these goals. Sales, marketing and management have played a major roll in forming my theoretical abilities into practice - something that will be kept with me forever.

I wouldn’t change my experience for the world, it’s been brilliant and I would advise anyone to do it. You wont regret it and you certainly wont be missing home. My only regret is not staying long enough, but I'm sure I will return one day.

Thursday 7 April 2016

My First Month In China.

Starting university I never thought I'd find myself in China. Doing a four year degree that gave me the opportunity to study abroad, even though my language ability was next to none; Saying "bonjour" and "amigo" in the same sentence I plucked up the courage to travel 9600 Km to Hong Kong.

Spending five months in the Netherlands and then another semester in France, I finally got the courage to think that maybe a country like China wouldn't be such a bad idea. After a month of being here, I can agree, it is one of the greatest decisions I've made in my life.

Following a bumpy flight and a long talk with a man about how great china was, only breaking conversation to eat his slowly melting Haagen Daz, I felt like I was almost ready for what was to come.

My first stop was Hong Kong, a city that is a must for anyone's wanderlust, particularity for those in my situation and needed a little easing into the Chinese way of life. As soon as I stepped off the plane I was overwhelmed with Chinese characters, tropical weather and buildings that, at short, touched the clouds. Confused with Jet Lag and a lack of understanding for what was going on, I dragged myself to the city center, dropping off my bags at the station with no possibility of entering my accommodation for 8 hours. This was almost a good thing as it forced me to keep busy rather than sleep.

With my head constantly staring up at the buildings and tall signs I made my way through the busy streets taking in the atmosphere and sights I'd never seen before. Apart from brief stops for food, this was my first day and it honestly never got boring.

The next day, after sleeping in a classic Hong Kong room that was the size of a shed back home,  having a mattress as hard as the wood that held it up, I miraculously managed to clear up some of the jet lag and visit Victoria peak. If there is any place I would advise to visit in Hong Kong, this would be it, standing over the whole city in it's breath taking commercial ambiance you can see everything. From the Bay to the Finance buildings and even the mountains surrounding this great city, all you find yourself doing as gaping at the view.

Once everything had been looked at twice over, and a couple more on top of that I made my way home back to the shed in Mong Kok. Detouring through the lady's market and stopping at some local street food stalls to get curry fish balls and what was described as "Korean Chicken" i steadily made my way to bed in preparation for the ferry journey in the morning.

Reaching Zhuhai went a lot smoother then planned, with very little problems at customs. Comfortably settled in, meeting a great bunch of interns, I received a little tour of the local area and food. Both of which looked and tasted great. One of my first meals when getting there was frogs legs and although I'd had them in France, the hot pot certainly put the French cuisine to shame.

Overly dressed and feeling stupid I entered ODM in a shirt, trousers and smart shoes, only to be greeted with a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. Starting my internship and for my full first month here I have been writing blogs, applying previous SEO knowledge and building up a more effective writing style when marketing products. In recent weeks this has slowly developed into a more client based focus: adding leads, creating briefs and developing RFQ's which has now turned into some of my own clients. As well as this I have built up a call list of sports companies, 3D printing companies and even potential Singapore clients. Finally I have been dealing with separate blogs, emailing and discussing with companies interested in guest blogging and getting their brand more connected in the promotional world.

Outside of work, even with the terrible weather, I have had chance to visit one of the main city attractions that doesn't include the nightlife; the scaled Yuan Ming Palace. This was a great day visit, taking a relaxing stroll around what turned out to be the not so miniature palace, and was exactly how I pictured China, even if it was a bit of a touristy.

Recently as I entered my fifth week in China, I have finally seen why people described Zhuhai as a "village" compared to other cities. Visiting Shenzhen was a massive eye opener to the real Chinese city life and made Hong Kong seem like it should be based in Europe. With Shenzhen there was double the people, double the buildings and double the time it took to get around the huge city. With a 3 day weekend due to the tomb sweeping holiday to celebrate the arrival of spring, it gave me enough time to walk around the city and visit the window of the world which had hundreds of recreations of famous buildings in a miniature form. In addition to this we managed to get ourselves some traditional Chinese massages after a stroll around the city. Although being an hour of pain that can only be compared to going in a wresting wring with The Rock, it was worth it... Kind of...

Having already achieved so much professionally and culturally I am looking forward to my following months with ODM and the rest of China. Although I haven't been able to describe half of the other things I've done within my weeks of being here such as visiting the Beach, trying Baijiu, eating a chickens foot and having an amazing kebab like food called Rou Jai Mo I cannot wait for what else this amazing country has to offer.

Monday 21 March 2016

My first taste of working in China

The start of my yet to experience 4 and a half month internship here at ODM has been eye opening to say the least. It has so far been exciting, and I have already learnt a lot about marketing and sales, and I can’t wait to learn more as my experience and knowledge grow. Although I have already spent quite a while in China, travelling and studying over the past few years, this is my first time working here in China and in an international company. Let’s just say, it’s certainly different! For starters you need the patience of a saint with the Chinese internet.

This is also my first time coming to Zhuhai and it has not disappointed me. The only problem is the random bad weather, but regardless it’s beautiful here and it doesn't have the busyness like other big cities. With the beaches and the sea, what’s not to love, I really can’t wait for the summer again. 

During my internship I am also doing a home stay through Internchina alongside working here at ODM. I thoroughly enjoy living with a Chinese family; it is without a doubt the best way to learn about China and the way everyday life is lived, its fun and it’s definitely great for my Mandarin practice, I'm made so welcome and I already feel like part of the family. 
It can be tiring though, living so far away from ODM means early and long working days and barging my way on to the busy buses in the morning; but it is something I am adapting too quickly and after a while I am certain it will be ‘normal’. 


From travelling through China, Guangdong is definitely one of my favourite regions and the place I have spent most of my time. To me its closest to feeling like home, its nature is beautiful, it has the best food (肠粉and早茶)(hence the food picture), environment, and it has barely any pollution, and being accustomed to already living in China it has been a bonus for fitting straight in with Chinese life.

My exploration of Zhuhai is minimal at the moment. I'd say compared to my time studying in Hangzhou just before this, time is not of the essence, so it can be difficult to balance my time with my friends and with the family also. But so far, I did go to the Chimelong Ocean Kingdom Park during my first week and that is certainly worth checking out on a weekend with great weather. I have yet to also travel to Macau, but that is for sure on the agenda.


All in all, this experience is worth it. In my first week at ODM I was very busy and new to everything and I did feel quite overwhelmed. But now I feel comfortable as I get better and faster, and I love it here.
I have been so busy that I have barely contacted my family since arriving again in China. But it’s good, it means that I will achieve something in learning so much all of the time; I know I will learn important life skills, become more confident, and will be well on my way to achieving something bigger in the future. I know my experience here in ODM will be one of the greatest experiences to date, and thank you ODM for giving me this opportunity. 

Wednesday 3 February 2016

My month in Zhuhai!

One thing that I believe very strongly in is that if you say you are going to do something, do it. It’s easy saying that you’ll do all of these wonderful things and go to all of these magnificent places, but until you actually put your mind to it and get the ball rolling, they are just empty words. You’ll simply be left with what ifs and regrets. So when I say that I’m going to do something, I stand by my word and do my utmost to make it happen.

For me, I said to myself that I wanted to come to China to work as an intern. There were a million and one reasons I could think of that could possibly stop me from going. Who would I live with? Would I like it? Would the language barrier be a big issue? I mean I would be 6,000 miles from home. One of my biggest fears about coming here was quite simply trying to get a decent hair cut! However, I didn’t want this to be something I said I’d do and never did. Nothing will ever be perfect and you’ll always have doubts about what you are doing. So sometimes you just need to jump in the deep end. I blocked these negative thoughts from my mind and focused on what a great opportunity this could be. I then paid my deposits and booked my flights. All of a sudden, I was locked in. I was going to China for the first time in my life.

China here I come!
Admittedly though, my time in China got off to a shaky start. This included not having my luggage for the first 4 days of my trip, not understanding any signs and not knowing any other interns. These were precisely the problems that I thought of before I came out here. Fortunately, they quickly began to straighten themselves out, and I started to feel more and more settled by the day. Before I knew it, I felt at home, experiencing many new things with similar minded people, who had also come out here to experience life in a foreign country.

There has been so many things that I've learned in this short space of time. The first of which is that the food here is magnificent. How Chinese people get such simple dishes to taste so good is beyond my comprehension. Normally I would turn my nose up at a vegetable dish, but in China they taste so good that I can’t get enough of them. Before I came here I seriously struggled with spice in my meals as well. But my taste buds have really grown to enjoy a little spice with dinner. Needless to say, the cuisine has been a welcome change in my life since I arrived.

I had been told before I came that Zhuhai is known as the most liveable city in China, and I can now see why. It’s not the biggest city in China, nor is it the most spectacular, but there lies the reason why it is so nice. It’s not overwhelming, it's not horrendously busy and it's not expensive. It has a fantastic feel to it, the people are very friendly, and most importantly it's a very safe environment to be in. There are hidden gems dotted all around the city, whether it be restaurants, bars or tourist attractions. Needless to say that it's been a great place to settle into.

In terms of my actual internship at ODM, my role has been varied. The majority of my time has been spent blogging in order to bring in new business for the company, and this has definitely helped my research and writing skills. But I've also had a chance to arrange business meetings with international clients, learn about the manufacturing process and run Twitter accounts. The latter plays such an important role in the business world these days, that I found it intriguing how it can be utilised to promote a business. All in all, my 4 weeks here have been a great experience, and I have no doubt that this experience will be a welcome addition to my CV.

I was even lucky enough to go on a weekend trip to Danxia mountain in Shoaguan, and as you can below, that was time well spent. It really gave me a sense of the vastness and beauty that China has to offer.

Stunning view from our trip to Danxia
With all this in mind, I really got myself in an enjoyable routine. Playing football, Chinese lessons, meals with friends, going out on the weekends. Zhuhai has felt like a little home away from home, and I’m going to miss for sure. What I like most is that everyone on the program knows everyone, and it’s like being part of a family.

Not matter where you go, you can always find people to play football with!

In conclusion, I have thoroughly enjoyed my time in Zhuhai. I can return home knowing that I’ve had an excellent experience and that I have no regrets coming here.

I’d like to say a big thank you to the ODM group for providing me with the chance to work in China. It has been a great place to work, and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed being part of a successful business. I know I was only there for a month, but it’s been a brilliant office to work in and I wish everyone here the very best for the future.

I’d also like to say a huge thank you to InternChina for what they have done for me since I’ve been out here. They’ve helped me sort out all of my issues, and were always checking in to see how I was doing. The service that I have received has been excellent, and I feel like I’ve been supported from day one.

Alas, my short stay in China has come to an end. But I know I did the right thing by coming out here. Immersing myself in the culture, meeting new people and adding valuable work experience are all positive things I can take away from my experience.

There's an old saying that says 'the world is a book, and those who don't travel only read one page'. Well, I think it is fair to say that I can walk away from my experience in China knowing that I’ve read and enjoyed the chapter on Zhuhai.

Goodbye Zhuhai, until next time!

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