Garry Wang is a charming and enthusiastic young gentleman, and the kind of guy you always see taking an active role in class activities. He was born in Australia into a Chinese family, making him an Australian born Chinese or “ABC” for short. Six years ago, he decided to move to China, the land of his forefathers. Since his return, he has tried and experienced many different things in entrepreneurship and leadership, and learned many valuable lessons in the process. His illustrious experiences in China has helped him to discover his life goals and areas of interests, and further cemented his belief that everyone should, “Love what you do and do what you love. I want to empower more people to do more of what they love doing.”
Founder & general manager of Base Fit
Two degrees in Business Administration and Information Technology from University of Technology Sydney
※ “I love China and have really enjoyed the time I have been back here”
Since he was born and grown up in Australia, many of Garry’s friends find it difficult to understand why he would leave Australia, a land with such a comfortable environment of culture and natural beauty, and decide to return to China. Regarding this question, Garry has his own point of view which he shares.
“Since I grew up in Australia, coming back to China and being here for now over six years, I think the greatest challenge for me has still been culture differences. But even though it has been challenging for me to adapt to all the differences, the things I have learned about Chinese culture and history have in return greatly helped me better understand their role in modern day China. Through my love of sports and traveling, I have made many friends here. And many of them have asked me, ‘Hey Garry, why did you return to China?’ You see, they all think that Australia is so comfortable, that they can’t imagine someone born there would want to come to China long-term. But I tell them that I firmly believe China has everything Australia has and even more. I love China, and have enjoyed the six and a half years I have been back. I have a very special place in my heart for China.”
“Of course every aspect of my life from basic lifestyle habits to life concepts all have been greatly influenced by my growing up outside of China. One of the things that has really impacted me is the slogan I have come to firmly believe in which says, ‘Do what you love, and love what you do.’ When I have a passion about something, I want to do it for the rest of my life. I think this is presently one of the major differences between the social culture of China and foreign countries. The reason I designed my own fitness and wellness program business after I returned to China, is that I wanted to share this idea with more people through my own example, and encourage people to go out and do the things they have passions for.”
※ Start-up business: Advocating healthy lifestyle is my passion
Garry is now involved in doing the thing he has a passion for — fitness and wellness programs. He started up the Base Fit. In actuality, this was not his original career of choice when he first returned to China. He now has much more experience and understanding about the business he runs.
“My first plan in returning to China was to run a family business. But after I was here for some time, I realized that the work I was doing was not the career I wanted to spend my life doing and that Ineeded to find an opportunity and platform to do the thing I really wanted to do, namely fitness and health. After six years of trying many kinds of start-up business projects, I am now focusing on partnering with Dili Fresh to create an even better holistic health platform. My passion is helping people have holistic health. We often hear many people from the working class say, ‘I don’t have time to exercise’, ‘There is no fitness center near my house’ or ‘I don’t have the right environment to do exercise.’ As a result, our goal is to help everyone get enough exercise, and order enough fresh and healthy food every day. We hope we can, through combining fresh food supermarkets, shared kitchens, and unmanned fitness centers, bring this kind of healthful lifestyle to the local Beijing people.
Even though Garry didn’t continue his family business, he is very proud and loves the work he is doing. His family also has greatly supported him in pursuing his dreams. “I believe being healthy starts with your heart and your mindset. Our strategy now is to target the market of people born after the 80s, 90s and beyond who are interested in being healthy. If our platform of healthy food and reasonable methods of exercise can help for example a father who is in extremely poor health to return to a full energetic life, be able to run, jump and play with his children, I think it is much more meaningful than working at any family business or any other major business. My family and relatives greatly support me in my choice and present career. As far as I am concerned, I love what I do, and I hope I can share love with other people. You know we cannot change the world as a whole, but if we can change our own little world, in essence we have already changed the world.”
※“The next two years will be extremely challenging for me, but I have high expectations”
After he encountered some problems in the process of starting up his own business, Garry decided to overcome his weak areas by getting higher education. His desire to attend Tsinghua University and Cornell University led him to choose the Cornell-Tsinghua Dual Degree Finance MBA and become a member of the freshmen class of 2018. Talking about his study life for the next two years, he said frankly, "The next two years will be a great challenge for me, but I am very optimistic about what I will achieve."
"My undergraduate course was business and information technology, and majored in marketing management. During the process of starting up and running my own business, I came to recognize what my weak areas were. I believe that if you are doing a start-up, you have to have either a solid financial foundation, or a strong partner. I can say that the area of finance is my weakness. I need to improve and strengthen my knowledge and ability in this area. I’m the kind of person who likes to throw myself into the deepwaters—this actually is one of the reasons why I chose this FMBA program. I believe that applying the knowledge I learn in this course to my business will enable me to share my passion and vision with more people.
“I believe Tsinghua's professors and alumni are the best in the world, and Cornell's professors and alumni are the same. I also believe that joining the FMBA program, the knowledge gained here can definitely challenge everyone, help you reach beyond yourself, and soar high. Studying with such a class of excellent students, I will be able to learn and progress. For this reason, I am looking forward to learning more theory and experience from all the teachers and students during these next two years. That is another reason I chose to came here.”
"I know that the next two years will be very challenging for me, not only the financial knowledge part, but also the Chinese language aspect. But then again, this what life is all about. It is by communicating with talented people that you acquire good habits and learn quality ideas. This in turn enables you to come closer to reaching your dreams. I believe that the excellent teachers and students in this program will help continue to mold me and stimulate my potential, thus helping me better fulfill my dreams.”