Yang Yongfa had waited tables for seven hours. But he instinctively switched on his big smile when another customer walked in.
Nightshift drags on until three in the morning. But Yang still cleans and sets tables in a robot-like manner.
The restaurant where Yang works is the much-hyped hot-pot chain Haidilao. Its famed customer service is legendary among Internet users.
They go sight-seeing to Haidilao to watch devoted employees at work.
A family-like culture and military-style management are behind the employees’ commitment. But some HR experts say that a strong corporate culture doesn’t suit everyone.
Asked about his boundless energy, Yang, 23, a grad of Yan’an University, attributes it to the company’s parental care for its employees and opportunities for promotion.
Haidilao offers Internet-connected apartments with a housekeeping service, an education fund and attractive severance pay among its perks to motivate employees.
More and more companies are stamping their corporate ethos on employees’ minds by caring for them like children.
Google pampers its employees by offering them massage armchairs and billiard tables at work.
Perks are effective in boosting employees’morale and molding them to become the type of staff the company wants.
Yang can repeat the tenets on his pre-job training brochure word for word: “Careful, patient, considerate, enthusiastic”.
"The housing price in Beijing is daunting, but our dorms are well-decorated apartments. The boss treats me well, and I should treat my customers well too,” said Yang.
However, these caring companies are not necessarily easy-going managers, according to Chen Xi, career consultant from Zhaopin.com.
"Instead, for many of these companies, the incentives are used to balance their strict rules and regulations,” said Chen.
Guidelines for Haidilao waiters cover trivial matters. A waiter is required to change a customer’s hot towel no less than four times and no more than six times (if the customer has no special requirements).
Chen added: “Young people attracted by tempting incentives may not be prepared for this. It’s difficult for them to fit into the workplace.”
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