#responsibility

Elyn Hu, Speed stacker and rollerblader who recharges with tai chi, plays the piano and baseball with her 6-year-old daughter.
Looks after all Bertelsmann training in China, inspiration and source of calm for young talents, loves to pass on knowledge.
Balances jobs and responsibilities as HR Director for arvato and the Bertelsmann Corporate Center China.

Elyn Hu

For me, HR is not a job but a way of life

I love everything to do with people; I love passing on knowledge and communicating with people, discovering their potential and promoting their talents,, says Elyn Hu. She looks after the Bertelsmann University Program in China and is also supporting for all personnel matters concerning the Bertelsmann Corporate Center China and Bertelsmann Asia Investments. This means traveling all over the People’s Republic. On top of it all, I also have a second job since the beginning of this year: I spend half of my time at arvato, where I take care of the talent management and development programs.

Before joining Bertelsmann, she worked in Shanghai in the marketing department of an American fashion company, where she was in charge of merchandising, training courses and PR. But that was not the right job for her, so she moved on to an interior design company a year later. When Elyn was offered the opportunity of joining Bertelsmann’s Human Resources team, she did not hesitate. Because that was exactly what I always wanted to do. As the saying goes,

Finding your profession is like finding your partner for life.’ I think that is a very apt saying; after all, we spend half of our life at work, so why not do a job we like?

Today, Elyn is extremely satisfied with her life – both her professional and her private life. I’ve been working for a great company for the past nine years now; I have a great boss, a sweet daughter and a husband who loves me. And her future prospects are also auspicious: Nine is considered a lucky number in China and symbolizes a long relationship, she says, laughing. She appreciates above all one thing about her employer:

For me, Bertelsmann is a place where entrepreneurs feel at home. The people here are creative, passionate, down to earth, practical and always willing to take risks and to face challenges

In all of the years I’ve been with Bertelsmann, I enjoyed going to work every day. One particular milestone has stood out for her, though: “Six years ago, I was entrusted with two babies – almost at the same time. One was my sweet daughter, and the other was the responsibility for Talent meets Bertelsmann. It was a little bit as if my life had suddenly become completely different.

Talent meets Bertelsmann continues to be an important part of her job. Every year, I spend the first three months after the Chinese New Year with preparations for the event. By now, it has become far more than just a career event. It is a creative process in which we help young people to redefine their personal values, goals and passions. I believe that with Talent meets Bertelsmann, we have established a circle where extraordinarily talented young Chinese people meet. And when the participants then tell you after the two-day workshop that it was the most meaningful and worthwhile seminar they have ever attended, and that the Bertelsmann HR team is the most professional and caring team with whom they have ever worked – then I know it was worth all the effort.

One decisive reason for this praise is probably also her own personality. Due to her gentle and sensitive ways, the young visitors often turn to her like to an oasis of calm. The participants sometimes call me ‘Sister Elyn.’ I like this name, because it shows how close they feel to me, and how much they trust me. I love supporting young, talented people as they progress along their career path, and helping them to overcome their personal challenges. That’s also why my colleagues call me ‘Elyn the Gardener.’ Gardeners look after their plants in every possible way. They help to bring the potential that slumbers in the plants to life. I see myself as a supporter who does everything she can to bring the potential slumbering in people to life.

n her private life, the cultivator of talent enjoys contrasts: Some of what I enjoy doing is very fast-paced – for example, I’m currently learning to speed stack and to play the piano. I also love going inline skating with my daughter, or playing baseball. In contrast to that, my other two great passions, T’ai Chi and the tea ceremony, tend to be more slow-paced and calm. The tea ceremony has now even become a ritual enjoyed by my entire family. Every Saturday and Sunday morning, we sit together, drink tea and talk or read a little. These relaxing moments help her to clear her mind and to forget the stress of everyday life. The calm gives me strength, and I can think about things I usually don’t have time to think about. And it helps me to draw inspiration, and to be able to pass this inspiration on to others.

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