Yang Yuanqing Gets It

Last week a spokesperson for Lenovo announced that it's chairman, Yang Yuanqing, will share 3.25 million from his bonus with some 10,000 staff in China and 19 other countries. The payments will amount to about $300 per person.

Earlier this year Lenovo overtook HP as the world's largest seller of personal computers. Yang has also made comments about continuing to grow Lenovo's share of tablets and smartphones, and last year they became the 4th largest producer of those devices.

In a company memo about the bonuses, Yang was quoted as saying that he, "believes that he has the responsibility as an owner of the company and the opportunity as our leader to ensure all of our employees understand the impact they have on building Lenovo." Did you hear the three key words in this quote?

  • Responsibility. It just makes good business sense to reward those whose efforts have helped the company grow to its current level of success. The greatest asset of any company is its people.
  • Opportunity. Yang understands that his bonus can most effectively be used in this way to maintain the enthusiasm of his staff to keep moving forward toward a larger goal. Leaders are always looking for ways to increase the motivation of their followers to work toward bigger results.
  • Understand. $300 to a factory employee is a significant amount of money. While money is often used as the currency to reward and encourage employees, it doesn't have to be. The key is to find out what would most connect with their values and interests.

Some of the naysayers will have comments like, "I bet he won't do it next year," or "Look how much he already makes." Let's not miss the point. Chairman Yang saw an opportunity to reward his team for their hard work, and he took action. That's solid advice whether you're the chairman of a company, manager of a small office, or the head of your family.

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