Huishan Dairy Products, one of China’s largest producers of dairy products, has hired Schouten Global to support it with the design and deployment of a leadership development programme.
End of October the Chinese president Xi Jinping hosted an Official State Visit from the Netherlands, welcoming among others King Willem Alexander and Queen Máxima, as well as a delegation consisting of government officials and senior representatives from the private sector. For participating Dutch organisations the trade mission turned out successful, said a spokesperson for the body, with an estimated €500 million in deals struck between Chinese and Dutch organisations.
Among one of the deals was a contract between Schouten Global and Huishan Dairy Products*. Under the watchful eye of Dutch Secretary Bert Koenders, vice-SecretarySharon Dijksma and vice-Secretary Martin van Rijn, executives of both parties signed the agreement on October 25th in Beijing, kicking off the start of a yearlong partnership in the field of management development and human resources. The contract consists of two main pillars. Firstly, Schouten Global will develop a programme for first line managers and middle managers of the Chinese dairy giant, with the goal to improve leadership skills. “Chinese managers are relatively young; they have great responsibilities as their businesses often grow fast. Many of them have had no formal training in leadership and management. We are accelerating their development, allowing for better results in their current role, but more importantly make them ready for next steps,” comments Camiel Gielkens, director of Schouten Global’s business unit in China.
The second pillar aims at embedding the management development programme within the organisation, through among others the professionalisation of the internal L&D function. Trainers from Schouten Global will train Huishan experts on a range of didactic, personal and functional skills, equipping them with the capacities and tools to optimise training sessions and resources within the firm.
For Huishan, the deal with the Dutch soft skills specialist builds on a warming trade relation with international enterprises. Earlier this year, the Chinese dairy giant announced a joint venture with Dutch FrieslandCampina to develop a new brand of baby milk, while in 2013 the Chinese teamed up with Switzerland-based consumer goods giant Hero to develop an infant formula milk powder.
From Schouten Global’s perspective, the tie up adds another large Chinese corporate to its growing list of Asian clients, which includes the likes of Baidu (a search engine dubbed the Chinese Google), China Merchants Bank, Huawei and Air China. The programme will be executed by Schouten China, the firm’s Chinese operations with offices in Beijing and Shanghai, and supported by global experts. Globally, Schouten Global has more than 700 trainers, coaches and consultants in 50 countries.
* Founded in 1951, Huishan is the largest dairy producer in Northeast China. The company has three infant milk powder production bases with the design capacity to produce more than 160,000 metric tons per year.