- Career Development
A Woman in a Man’s World
Though Mao Zedong famously said “women hold up half the sky,” in the seventh decade of his revolution some professions remain male-dominated. These include engineering. However, Zhou Wei of Midea Washing Machine Division’s Research and Development Centre is pioneering the breaking of this particular boundary.
Since December 2010 when she joined the center to specialize in rotary drums, she has variously been responsible for design, evaluation, testing, trial production and production, rising to a managerial level. In 2014, Zhou and her team were responsible for twelve projects for overseas sales, and met 14 cost reduction targets.
To meet deadlines and customer demand, Zhou and her team routinely work overtime. Such a demanding job will give anybody their share of stories to tell. When asked if she is any exception, she can’t stop talking.
“In 2013 during a project for A+/A++ energy efficiency, the electronic control test shorthanded. To get it right in time, we all had to do an all-nighter in the laboratory. You could say this was my first ever night shift,” she told an internal Midea publication.
Any research and development engineer will be able to relate to such a story. “This kind of experience provides a useful lesson in life. Never give up and explore every avenue until you succeed,” she said.
In her place of work, Zhou is physically very active, often carrying heavy equipment between office and factory. This has earned her the title of “tomboy” as she continues to play a traditionally man’s game and win.
Her hobbies are highly typical of a Chinese girl born in the 80s: karaoke, selfies and World of Warcraft. “I want to improve myself, through everything I do.”