Le Thi Ngoc Minh – New design and new markets

Le Thi Ngoc Minh knows how important cultural differences are. Her company, Quang Vinh Co. Ltd., manufactures ceramic products such as flower pots, vases and decorative items for export. As vice director, Minh explores foreign markets, visits trade shows and examines customer demands. “If I understand the culture of a country and the preferences of the people there I can sell our products a lot better”, she says.

Quang Vinh Co. Ltd. has been selling its products to a Rhineland-Palatinate ceramics company since 2007. The time Minh spent on the Manager Training Programme studying German business culture and demand for ceramic products has paid off. Since her return, she has almost doubled export quantity and turnover to Germany. Ties with the German business have also become closer, with designers from both companies working together to adapt conceptual product designs to meet German demand.

Beside the annual update of the design for decorative articles Minh has introduced further innovations such as a time management system for employees, and a system whereby products are certified according to the newest ISO quality standard. “When I returned to my company after the Manager Training Programme my thinking had changed – and our CEO was very supportive and encouraging when I proposed and implemented these reforms,” says Minh.

The results became apparent very quickly and included the hiring of new employees, a considerable increase in turnover over the previous year, and expansion through exports to Chile and the Czech Republic. Plans for the future include the introduction of a chain of shops on the domestic market, and exports to other foreign markets and customers – Germany was only the first step towards tapping into the European market. Hence Minh’s advice for other participants of the Manager Training Programme: “Use each moment of the training as your big chance to open your eyes and discover great opportunities for your future business!”

Name: Le Thi Ngoc Minh
Company: Quang Vinh Co., Hanoi, Vietnam
Industry sector: Ceramic goodsPosition: Vice director
Training in Germany: 27th March 2009 – 26th April 2009
Training centre: Deutsche Management Akademie Niedersachsen, Celle