NAME Alex Xu
AT CELLMARK SINCE 2008
What does the Qingdao office specialize in?The Paper division is the only division represented here, but we source all kinds of products upon requests from our customers. We also support customer service as the back office of CellMark International and CellMark Asia, doing their documentation and supporting logistic services worldwide.
What do you focus on in your daily work?Sourcing is my main job, but finding and developing new opportunities is becoming more and more important to me. As the competition of paper products becomes harder and the profit is less, we must find the right products besides paper to make us more competitive. It is a big challenge!
Besides sourcing new products, how do you overcome these challenges?If my last 15 years of work experience have taught me anything, it’s that you should be a good person first, then do good business. Most of the clients get the product from you because of who you are. So by trying my best to be a good person, I can build long-lasting relationships with suppliers and customers. Some of these people have ended up becoming close friends of mine.
– My colleagues and I always try working proactively, taking action before things go in the wrong direction. Doing something rather than just waiting. I think all of us have this positive mindset – despite all the challenges we face every day and despite not knowing what’s going to happen tomorrow, we know that if we just focus we can achieve any target we set.
We are living in an ever-changing world. Our competitors, our clients, our suppliers – they are all changing. If we cannot stay with the changes we will lose our advantage and lose the opportunities. Since the second half of 2016 until now, the domestic demands of paper in China has grown a lot, so almost all the paper mills have increased the export selling price. Which means that the paper from China is losing its advantage. In this case, we must find the suitable products or suppliers as an alternative option. It is a quite a challenge! But challenges, in turn, is what keeps me going.
I hope this is my last job. I joined CellMark in 2008 and never want to work for another company again. The trust my colleagues place in me becomes an inspiration and motivation for me to work hard. The same goes for a lot of clients and suppliers; the mutual trust inspires a lot of good business. And with the relationships we build doing business together I consider some of my customers to be among my best friends.
Qingdao, where I live and work, is a city on the east coast of China. It has beautiful sceneries and a pleasant climate. The city’s typical red-roofed buildings are surrounded by lush trees, with the winding coastline and little islands painting a beautiful picture before your eyes, mountains in the background. Many of the European-style buildings here used to be home to many famous figures.
The most famous thing to come out of Qingdao, though, is beer! Tsingtao Brewery has made their world famous beer here for more than a century and is named after the city. As the temperature rises and summer gets closer, you see more and more people stopping by the shops after work to pick up some refreshing Tsingtao beer.