We had the first day of company visits today. Starting off with Sunshine Insurance Group, we made our way to the another outside ring of the city. I was really surprised as we pulled up outside the company because I was expecting to visit an office in a tall building but that was nothing like Sunshine Insurance Group’s company. It looked like we had stepped onto a college campus in the US; there were big red brick buildings surrounded by bright green grassy areas and lots of flowers. I couldn’t believe we were still in Beijing because this architecture was so not like anything surrounding it.
Sunshine Insurance had grown so much in 10 years, it was kind of crazy. We watched a video about the founder of the company that was kind of funny because of how dramatic they made it seem. The company seems to be super successful and they told us that they recruit students from Harvard, Stanford, Columbia, and a bunch of other Ivy League schools. Afterwards when we took a tour of the company’s campus, some of us went in carts and were driven around which was really nice. Then we got lunch which was served in a buffet style rather than a family style meal and I enjoyed all of the food as per usual.
We left Sunshine and made our way to see Xiaomi, a company who makes smartphones. I liked hearing about the supply chain of the company from the employee who spoke to us. He was very knowledgeable on both the engineering side as well as the business side of things, and was able to give lots of details when we asked questions about the company.
After we learned about how the phones are made and distributed we went to the mall next to their office and looked around the Xiaomi store. All of their phones had beautiful screens, but some of them had the front facing camera at the bottom corner rather than the top which I thought was weird. We also saw that Xiaomi makes a lot of other products like security cameras, laptops, and electric razors.
Once we got back to the hotel a group of us went to a dumpling place nearby the hotel and ordered so many different kinds of dumplings. I personally liked the shrimp dumplings the best. After that we went to the mall for a bit and observed the different styles of clothing that is more popular here in China. Its super hot here now, but most people wear long pants and jackets and I don’t know how. We also stopped by a “cat cafe,” where you would pay to go into a room full of cats and play with them. I didn’t go in, but 2 of my friends did while the rest of us watched them play with the cats and then we left to continue looking at stores.
The days are going by so fast here, I can’t believe that we only have one day left in Beijing! Tomorrow we’re seeing a lot of cultural sites so I’m excited to see those!