Dr. Engelbert Wimmer

Leadership Transformation Cycles: the Haier Case.

The White Goods dragon sheds skin after skin.

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Corporate transformations can only succeed when led by a forward-looking CEO who plans to shape the future(s) ahead. Without this primary precondition, companies risk disappearing from the market. An outstanding transformer, for example, is the entrepreneur Zhang Ruimin, who showed the way par excellence. In this white paper you will learn everything about the various changes in his company - and how modern leadership is lived.

The CEO must become the Chief Development Officer: Anyone looking for an example of constant experimentation as a business strategy would probably be inclined to start their search at one of the tech giants such as Netflix, Amazon or Google; and yet, away from the view of the global business community, over the past 35 years, a Chinese concern has been on a continuous journey from a somewhat uninventive and, in terms of quality, decidedly unconvincing manufacturer of fridges to a leading force of innovation in the global market for household goods. We’re talking about Haier – and if that name sounds German, that’s because it was: the Chinese company used to be in partnership with Liebherr-Haier. In essence, this transformation is the impressive work of one single, highly effective manager, legendary Haier CEO Zhang Ruimin.
Author(s)Author(s)
Dr. Engelbert Wimmer is the founder of international management consultancy and investment company e&Co., whose Board of Management he chairs. He studied telematics at the University of Graz (Austria) and did a doctorate in philosophy at the University of Bremen (Germany). Since more than 20 years he is a consultant to multinational automotive manufacturers, currently focussing on digital, agile, and questions of organisational structure and leadership.