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EMBA students get inside look at entrepreneurial giants

  • Aug 27, 2014
EMBA students get inside look at entrepreneurial giants

The companies may be common names to most of us – like Google, LinkedIn or Intel.

But the lessons learned by the Hong Kong EMBA class of 2015 as they visited these companies could only be described as some of the most interesting, innovative and life changing ones the students have ever learned. Students visited Silicon Valley and met executives from companies, such as Google, LinkedIn, and airbnb, Oracle, eBay and Salesforce as part of the entrepreneurship module of the EMBA program.

Here are some of the comments and insights from their recent trip.

“This trip has been very helpful to me. I’m not naturally inclined to think like an entrepreneur, so these company visits have been very valuable: from fundraising; to the process of starting a company; and, what innovation means for both large and small companies. We also covered a lot of topics that leaders need to think about, not only about the product or services, but also the leadership and people aspects to business. It is encouraging to realize that there is diversified talent needed to make a company work and that entrepreneurship is not only about just being naturally creative or having a mind to want to start something. It is definitely an area I think that – after this trip and all of these company visits – I am open to considering.”
—Elizabeth Li, EMBA 2015
Investment Banking, JP Morgan
“This trip was really beneficial for me just to be able to go to these big companies like Google or Ebay. You hear about their plans from their directors and senior executives and see how the material that we learn in class is actually what they are doing within their companies. For example, we saw how feedback from their customers was driving their next product or service and how they were using it to make their companies better.”
—Cora Hui, EMBA 2015
IT Systems Specialist
“The trip was very useful. It was my first trip to America, so I was very surprised to visit in person with these companies. It’s very easy to use these companies’ services, but it’s very engaging for me to get in touch with people in these giant companies and learn how they think about work, and how they operate the company. These giant companies grow up from nothing – from startups. This fits well with the entrepreneurship course. They show you their philosophy of business and how you can learn from it. What really surprised me was the consistency of the companies in the Silicon Valley and their connection with venture capitalists, government and universities which was very friendly to entrepreneurs.”
—Yok Zhang, EMBA 2015
Founder, Simvest
“These visits are very relevant to what I’ve been working on, such as how they innovate in their design processes, and how it links in with the packaging and sales. I learned about new business models that I could relate to and perhaps I could build on something like that in my own work.”
—Frances Wong, EMBA 2015
Co-founder/Partner Maze Atelier
“Today’s experience was really unique. It was unbelievable to get up close to Google and eBay. You just get blown away by the sheer size of the organization. Google was a fantastic experience, just the way that they do things, the way that they set up their operation and in the way that they work – there is a lot of colour, a lot of space. It really gets your creative side going.”
—Trevor Hammond, EMBA 2015
Vice-President, Sands China