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Saturday, July 13, 2019

Exploring the Secrets behind Artificial Intelligence

July, 13 2019. Shanghai – More than 40 CEIBS students and alumni today visited Bosch, a world-renowned company with more than 100 years of history. The visit was conducted on the generous invitation of Annabelle Cao (GEMBA 2018), Vice President of Human Resources at Bosch Suzhou. The whole day visit included keynote speeches from Bosch’s Suzhou General Manager and heads of various departments, interactions with Bosch executives, an Industry 4.0 factory visit and an apprenticeship factory workshop visit.

As part of the visit, participants had the chance to interact with Bosch Suzhou General Manager Andary Georges to get a better understanding of the company’s vision and strategy for addressing both external environmental changes and internal management innovation challenges in the broader context of the recent slump in the automotive industry. Internet of Things was also a major theme of the discussions as it has now become a big trend in the automobile industry. Heads of Bosch marketing, engineering, research and development, human resources and other departments also shared some the latest developments in their innovative methods.

At the Bosch Industry 4.0 factory, participants got a look at the powerful infrastructure and huge artificial intelligence workings behind the manufacturing giant. They also learned about the factory’s synergy between people and machines, its effective two-way management system and the logic behind it. In the context of recent and intense debates about Industry 4.0, it was noted that AI has not completely replaced the labour force at Bosch’s factory. Instead, the company has worked to develop a relatively harmonious coexistence between people and machines exists – one where synergies are created on the basis of respective strengths and duties.

During their visit, participants also discovered how Bosch emphasises the cultivation of its people and maintains a strong talent development plan. The apprenticeship system at Bosch, in particular, is especially unique and represents a link between the enterprise and vocational college. It also serves as a bridge between theory and practice, and is an important means to cultivating professionals and helping them grow and develop. Moreover, participants learned how even a traditional apprenticeship system can become innovative if applied in appropriate scenarios.

Exciting activities beyond the classroom are amongst the most attractive aspects of the CEIBS Global EMBA programme. In addition to interacting with experienced professors, these activities provide CEIBS Global EMBA students the opportunity to actively exchange views, sharing their industry experience, generating ideas, and integrating knowledge and action. Many activities such as Class TED talks, industry leader sharing sessions, cultural exchange activities, interaction with Chinese EMBA students, company visits and other events are organised by students on a regular basis.

Here are some of their comments following the visit:


Irene Dai | General Manager, OMNI Retail Channel, Greater China, P&G

CEIBS Global EMBA 2017

“After a full day of on-site learning, everyone was amazed by the transformation of Bosch, its Industry 4.0 strategy and apprenticeship system. Recently, GEMBA has organised more and more cross-grade and cross-industry exchange activities and they are a great opportunity for people in the relevant industry to learn and share. For participants in different industries, it opens up a window of learning. I also appreciate the wonderful efforts of CEIBS Global EMBA 2018 students for setting the standard for excellence for GEMBA.”


Philipp Hug | Managing Director,  Buhler

CEIBS Global EMBA 2018

“With my technical background and interests, as far as I can remember back, I have often been in touch with Bosch products. However, I had no prior deep understanding in terms of how Bosch was set up nor how they approached their transformation toward a connected world. I was very impressed with how Bosch manages its portfolio even giving up on some former key products in order to maintain a clear focus. On the other hand, one could clearly feel how important people development and culture is within the Bosch group. Not only the level of diversity, but also the management is one of a kind.

Impressive also is how Bosch managed the set-up of the apprenticeship programme—something which is very unique not only in Germany, but also Switzerland. From my own past experience I know that it is not easy to implement such a programme in Asia. At the same time, I feel this can be something very beneficial not only for Bosch, but for the whole region. Last but not least, it totally reflects the philosophy of Robert Bosch, to the roots of where Bosch comes from. To me such company visits are great eye-openers and I really feel they do not only support personal development, but also encourage collaboration between companies for a better world.”


Jessie Zhang | Asia Pacific Vice President-Finance, Eaton China Investment Ltd.

CEIBS Global EMBA 2018

“Insightful presentations from top leaders revealed the secrets not only of their technology, but most importantly the leadership framework defining success. As CEIBS Global EMBA students, we have been exploring the core competencies that great leaders should build and values that make companies successful in the long run. Reflection from company visits always helps me to be a better leader not only in my company, but also in society. Our diverse class provides opportunities to have a close look at various companies and to learn from each other. This makes our CEIBS Global EMBA journey even more fruitful and exciting.”


Weihua Lin | CEO, Zhejiang Weijian Techenology Inc

CEIBS Global EMBA 2018

“Visiting Bosch gave me a deep understanding of the greatness and I admire the fact that Bosch has kept innovating for more than a century. As an entrepreneur, this is what my company lacks and what I need to think of. I participated in this company visit with an attitude of learning and pilgrimage, and in the end I benefited a lot. I believe that this experience will have a positive impact on me and help my company to grow.”


Annabelle Cao | HR Vice President, Bosch Suzhou

CEIBS Global EMBA 2018

“After the first 9 months of my learning journey in the CEIBS Global EMBA programme, I feel that in addition to the wonderful classroom learning, organising various company visits is a very effective learning method and opportunity. These types of activities beyond the classroom deeply link theory and practice, and offer students insights from different industries. They also offer everyone more opportunities to interact and communicate.

I had the privilege of organising this Bosch visit. In this constantly changing era, Bosch, with over a century of history showed how it is built to last and demonstrated its new global positioning as an IOT company. After talking with CEIBS students, Bosch colleagues also learned from different industries about strategy, about the latest technology trends, about talent development, about corporate culture, and about innovation. This co-creation of exchanges is a good opportunity for Bosch to learn from other industry experts.”