I was invited by the Center for Global Innovation at the Business Faculty of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, to give a talk in front of a group of Chinese CEOs and senior managers from a large government organization.
The group was in Israel for a week of tours and talks focusing on technology and management.
The organizers wanted someone to talk about engaging employees in company goals and actions – and chose me.
I spoke in English, and there was a simultaneous translation into Chinese.
The managers listened attentively, and towards the end one of them said I put too much emphasis on the importance of employees to a company's success.
He said he manages 10,000 employees.
I drew a big pyramid on the board, with him at the top, below him 8 VPs, and at the bottom 10,000 employees. I asked – how can you guarantee they'll efficiently produce quality products, if they aren’t engaged or invested in company goals?
I don’t think he was convinced, but a fruitful discussion developed, and there were a few CEOs who agreed with me.
It was a very interesting event.