The big teambuilding event at a Chinese factory spread after determined employees were filmed kneeling on the floor and punching each other in the face.
The footage, which circulates on the Chinese social media platforms Weibo and WeChat, was filmed at an event organized by the Meideli furniture factory on October 21, the Xi’an-based newspaper Shaanxi Business reported today.
The large-scale corporate event was by invitation only, with selected employees encouraged to show their determination in front of their colleagues, a manager told the newspaper.
Meideli, which is based in the city of Dongguan in the southern Chinese province of Guangdong, faces accusations of having a “cult” corporate culture, according to comments by the Twitter-like service Weibo.
During the event, employees in identical company head offices stand in a line and shout at their colleagues a few meters in front of them, as the video shows, while several dozen others line up behind them and wait their turn.
In the footage, the exercise – an obvious proof of the passion for the work – escalates when some employees fall to their knees and start punching themselves in the face. Two men, who are closest to the camera, take off their tops and hit the floor.
In an interview with Shaanxi Business, a nameless employee revealed: “Not every employee can participate. It was a training event for the sales department.
“The topic of the day was the creation of an iron army. It should encourage them.”
The term “iron army” refers to an unshakable group of soldier-like employees who fight unconditionally for the same cause.
Meideli’s brand manager, Zhang Min, told the newspaper: “Yes, this happened in our company. We outsourced the team building to a third party and invited employees from 12 of our most powerful distributors from around the country.
“The purpose of the training was to promote spiritual growth and create a cohesive team. What you saw was just one scene.
“Our distributors wanted their employees to see the most intense and passionate side of themselves. They did this voluntarily and decided to show their intensity in this way.
Zhang said the company does not hold more than one team-building event per year.
All their employees were in a good mood after the training event, Zhang added.