Tuesday 3 January 2017

The expert in anything was once a beginner: Finishing my internship in Zhuhai

After spending nearly 4.5 months back in China, it is time to retrace my steps and go back home. During my internship in Zhuhai I have learned, laughed and experienced so much more than I was expecting when I hopped on that plane back in August.

Zhuhai is a lovely little city and much more modern than I thought at first! It was great to be in China again and to notice my Chinese improving with each day. I ate all the mooncakes during Midautumn Festival, had the great opportunity to visit Guangzhou twice, celebrated my birthday at an awesome island festival and met so many wonderful people.

Guangzhou is also an amazing city, only an hour away by train. Some of my fondest memories of China were made here: from doing an awesome boat tour and having drinks on the 99th floor with a view of the Canton Tower, to strolling around and drinking rose tea in an Antique street and visiting the Guangdong Museum.

Through my work I have gained so much experience about sourcing. Before, it kind of felt like products just appeared from China out of thin air, but after working at ODM I now understand the process and hours of work that are behind every product. China is not a vending machine, unlike many people tend to think.

Flying out to the other side of the world isn't the hardest part: sit on a plane for a few hours and you're there. The trick is to make it your own. Of course sometimes it's difficult, language and culture will not be the same as back home. But instead of enduring, try turning it around and use it as a stepping stone to grow more independent and confident. Going abroad is a great way to learn from the things you don't understand yet and once you go home, you will notice how it opened your mind.

Had a great time in Zhuhai, and I really hope to come back one day soon!

ODM is opening a new office in Vietnam and looking for staff. Join the team for a great work and cultural experience!

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