The future of Australia – China business relations and a world of opportunities for emerging leaders

By Nicholas Flood, current student of the University of Sydney Business School MBA program

Nick FloodGraduating from my undergraduate degree in the midst of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC), a period where graduates for the first time in many years faced career uncertainty, served to enhance the personal interest I took in China’s economic development. Many commentators at the time asserted that the Australian experience of the crisis would, to a large part, be determined by China’s experience. With these insights in mind, I came to an understanding as a young Australian professional that China’s future & my future were intertwined.

Six years later and well into the early stages of my career, it is this very same dynamic that opens tremendous opportunities to me as an emerging business leader. The opportunities in China for expats, particularly those who are highly skilled and who possess over five years’ experience, are significant, given that such candidates are in short supply.

I’ve recently returned from Shanghai where I had the opportunity to undertake a hands-on consulting engagement with a large Chinese organisation through the Sydney MBA. Whilst in China, I undertook a series of lectures at Shanghai Jiao Tong University and forged new professional relationships with the school’s extensive alumni network in Shanghai at a networking function, in addition to the placement with the Chinese corporation.

Under the supervision of Professor Hans Hendrischke, I’ve also had the opportunity to supplement this experience with a robust program of classroom, self-directed and peer-learning to assist me in turning the insights gained from this experience into lasting understandings.

Put simply, undertaking the China International Business Project has fundamentally transformed my understandings and perspectives of the key factors that are shaping the globalisation strategies of Chinese enterprises and the implications of this globalisation process for Australian businesses.

More importantly, it has facilitated real personal and professional growth which will equip me as an emerging Australian business leader as China comes to take an ever increasing position of centrality.

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