Talents Help Invigorating the Alcohol Industry

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Lately, it has been pointed out that talents are the primary resource for development during the 20th Congress of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) and the 15th Congress of the Chinese Academy of Engineering (CAE). To further create a sound research environment for talents has become an important focus at all levels for respective sectors, departments and the whole society.

The alcohol industry is no exception, and as an industry involving the whole industry chain as well as many other industries, it is hungry for a diversified talent force.

For primary industries, the focus is how to produce as much as possible the raw materials for brewing with the increasingly scarce, limited land resources, for which improved land quality, agriculture technology, or even the substitutes of these materials are indispensable and all can’t be done without talents.

For the secondary industry, to inherit and innovate the existing technology, facilities, improve the organizational structure for a lean production, while meeting more output with minimal input, it requires to prioritize method and technological innovation, updates of equipment, as well as managerial innovation, which necessitates talents.

In the tertiary industry, marketing, guided-consumption, the increase of products’ added value with the lowest cost are inseparable from innovations led by talents with regard to retailing channels, market, and marketing.

It is clearly seen that talents are crucial to the whole industry chain, to the survival, growth and the prosperity of the baijiu industry. Traditionally, people have deemed it unimportant to focus on the hi-tech factor, for that baijiu could be produced even by ones living over 5000 years ago, a time of poor technological development, which left open a long-standing issue—the shortage for talents in this regard. The shortage has now become a drawback for the baijiu industry, and not until recent times did people come to realize the whole industry chain of baijiu. Even so, there still exists many unrevealed, unperceived issues that are beyond control. Moreover, as time goes by, and as people’s understanding of the baijiu industry, from the perspective of bioengineering, electronic technology, new materials and new raw materials etc., deepens, there will be more and more unknowns in the baijiu industry that are needed to be explored, understood and transformed. All of this can only be accomplished through specialized people, which justifiably manifests the urgent need for talents in the industry compared to other sectors.

How can we attack the long-standing shortage, urgent need for talents in the long run?

First is to make the best use of existing personnel’s talents, encouraging their creativity, for that when one’s creativity and motivation are activated, their productivity could be raised by 2.5-3 times. Accordingly, this requires us to provide a place for innovation, a relaxed environment for entrepreneurship, allowing the talents to be respected more and well recognized by the society. We’ve already had a lot of experience in this area, and it is plausible that talents can participate in the corporate distributions with their technological background. Such as these will surely stimulate more creativity out of talents.

Second, talent development. This starts with a proper allocation of the present specialized talent pool. Try to give a full play to their creativity, assigning them with appropriate posts, and try to avoid situations where their talents and their jobs are a mismatch. This is to ensure they love their work and are able to do the work creatively, for which we need a complete divorce from the notion chasing after official titles and power. Any contributions made on any positions for people, for the society, be they prominent or not, are great ones, and should be praised and respected. The success of Academician Yuan Longping has given us very good experience and enlightenment, a heritage for us to explore and follow.

The third is to cultivate well-qualified talents. The cultivation of talents cannot rely solely on schools. Schools can often only teach people knowledge. The foundation of the talents’ creativity is to truly make a good use of their knowledge and allow them to be successful in a certain field. Ultimately, it depends on people having theoretical knowledge in this area to tackle difficult, urgent and novel problems faced by human beings while insisting practically on their own posts, constantly exploring, finding and solving these problems. This is probably the most needed, the best and the most effective way in cultivating talents. Moutai Institute is able to achieve a good combination of theory and skills in running an enterprise-backed school, and there are many ways to succeed in the baijiu industry in this respect. However, compared to some emerging industries that have always focused on talent cultivation, we are still far behind. A long way is ahead of us compared with the efforts of some countries that emphasize basic and applied research.

Finally, the introduction of talents. The best way to deal with a talent shortage in an industry or an area in a short term is the introduction of talents, for it needs little time for training and growth. We might say that this is the most efficient way to cope with talent shortage, improve the proportion of talents and meet the urgent needs for talents. Guiyang suggested financing 5 million yuan for scientific research and project start-up also suggested financing 500 thousand yuan to build a post-doctoral workstation for talents, and provide favorable conditions for their settlement and work, and for their children’s easier access to school. Many provinces and regions have proposed to attract investments and “intelligence”. The introduction of a talent could bring a good project as well as the finance needed to run the project.

—by WABA Secretariat