#35 Bhasker Jaiswal – Advertising media executive chooses China long term
Bhasker works as Managing Partner of OMD China, a leading advertising media agency in Shanghai. His career spans over 16 years, and included 4 years in Malaysia before coming to China. He has been in China for past 8 years and worked in Guangzhou and Shanghai. He likes to play tennis and badminton and is always looking for a game. He currently lives in Shanghai with his wife and 4-year-old daughter.
When I came [to China] I realized, this is the market to be in.
How he got to China
While Bhasker was working for a global MNC advertising agency in Malaysia, an opening came up in Guangzhou. At that time, there were varying views on living and working in China in the marketplace but Bhasker decided to give it a shot. Two years later, he moved organizations to come to Shanghai.
What made the job attractive
Shanghai as a city was attractive in and of itself, especially in the media/advertising industry.
Making an in-country move
Bhasker thinks making a move within China is actually easier than coming here in the first place. He attributes this to the fact that what organizations are looking for is that invaluable China experience you gain from your first posting. One tip: Start looking and connecting for that next position really early on! The hiring process isn’t fast in China so give yourself half a year to look.
It was actually his first overseas move that gave Bhasker the most cultural challenges. He talks about how in Malaysia he experienced a very different mindset than he was used to. Four years after, Bhasker notes that he found coming to China a bit like going back home to India. Tune in to hear why.
Bhasker has made a great career out of his 8 years in China and he counts this longevity as success in and of itself! Additionally, he has learned to be incredibly flexible. This market allows you to have a Plan A, B, C & D and in fact, values a leader who can lead through all of the uncertainty.
Lessons learned along the way
- If you’re going for an in-country move, give yourself at least 6 months time to search and hand over responsibilities properly.
- Give yourself time to adjust.
- Reserve your judgement – treat life and work in China has a different flavor, instead of judging right and wrong.
- Adapt to the realities of the market.
- Nothing is right and nothing in wrong in China – it’s a massive, diverse country, culture and marketplace.
- Don’t appeal to everyone. Choose your market, be true to yourself, and fine-tune, as opposed to re-engineer, as you go along.
- Don’t expect your team to work well after 6PM.
- Give your team mid-afternoon deadlines, not evenings.
- Play sports to unwind and make sure you do whatever you need to balance life and work.
Yihaodian.com – Online e-commerce site for groceries (and pretty much everything else)
Connect to Bhasker
Linked In, search Bhasker Jaiswal