Weiling (William) Lin

Weiling (William) Lin  GW-CEPL ICBC Global Leadership Development Program Alumnus

Deputy Head of Business Administration Division, E-Banking Department & Head of Marketing Division, Internet Finance Marketing Center, ICBC, Beijing


Briefly describe how the GWU academic experience has challenged and enhanced your leadership competencies?

The academic goals are high at GWU.  There were many elective credit courses of interest, in addition to the tailor-made global leadership course. The program was academically rigorous with high reading and participation requirements, which means we had to study harder than the native students. But once we accomplished the goals, we felt full of achievement. We learned more about leadership knowledge, practiced leadership skills, improved cross-culture awareness, etc. throughout the whole semester.

Did your experience in Washington, D.C. better prepare you for the international market?  

Absolutely.  I think we are now better prepared and will feel confident if we are sent to the international market after the 9-month training in Washington, D.C. The first reason is we have improved our cross-culture awareness, which will help us work with people with different backgrounds appropriately and lead to success in other countries. Washington, D.C. is a diversified area, full of people coming from different countries, having different races and religions, and we obtained the experience in how to show respect and communicate with diverse populations. The second reason comes from the living experience in an unfamiliar country for an extended period of time. We will not be upset if we are sent to another country to live for a while. Additionally, we feel more confident in our use of English as well.

Did you benefit from the fellowship experience?  Did you apply these higher level competencies during the fellowship while networking within the institution and with others?

Definitely.  I learned a lot from the fellowship experience. What I learned most is how to work in an American workplace. I attended some working meetings and workshops, and I was assigned some tasks to accomplish. Therefore, I learned how a task is done in an American organization. During the fellowship, I tried to apply some competencies such as self-actualization and interpersonal skills. Since I was asked to finish a project by myself in 10 weeks, I made a plan and deconstructed the task into several small parts and finished them step by step. To accomplish those goals, I tried to build good relationships with others by using interpersonal skills. Actually, they helped me a lot to accomplish my objectives.

What did you enjoy and appreciate the most about Global Leadership Development Program (GLDP)?

I think they offer diversified courses, site visits and guest speakers. First, we can learn from different courses and discuss different topics every week, which makes every week seem fresh. Second, site visits is a great part of GLDP. We visited historical sites and institutions that have important influence on American society.  We attended some great meetings like the Spring Meeting of IMF & World Bank Group, which really opened our minds. Last, but not least, guest speakers are also a fantastic part of GLDP. The guests come from different organizations and are very knowledgeable and experienced, giving us great opinions about the economy, finance, and management, etc.