Monday Café: Has Fortune Made Chinese Entrepreneurs Happy?

China is one of the most powerful economies in the world and Chinese entrepreneurs have made undeniable contribution to its success. However, it is always a controversial topic whether the money brings happiness. On May 28th2013, Forbes China, collaborated with NYSE: NOAH, releases ¨2013 China Entrepreneur Happiness Report¨, which, for the first time, unveil to the whole world the deep-hearted insight of happiness among Chinese Entrepreneurs; what they value more in personal life, how they spend their spare time, how they manage their wealth, etc.


In the report, it defines 10 factors to measure the happiness; fortune, career, health, family life, self-realization (e.g. charity), social network, life quality, governance environment, natural environment, and social security. The score is 1-11; 1-5 means ¨Not Happy¨, 6-7 ¨Quite Happy¨, 8-11 ¨Happy¨.

It is reported that generally Chinese entrepreneurs are a little bit more than ¨Quite Happy¨, with a score of ¨8¨ in most happiness factors. However, most of them are under significant pressures because in the research almost 40% entrepreneurs admit that they are ¨very stressed¨ and almost 2/3 entrepreneurs are ¨quite stressed¨. The pressure mainly comes from physiological stress instead of that from material life. Almost 50.2% entrepreneurs are suffering the pressure from career, while 40% are facing the pressure from society, especially an inevitable situation to balance among all the stakeholders (e.g. shareholders, employees, consumers, related government office, etc.) inside the community behind their business.

The 3 main triggers to the happiness of Chinese entrepreneurs are Family Life, Career, and Health. And it is showed that male entrepreneurs in China value more in family life than female ones (29.9% vs. 15.3%), which is on the contrary to the stereotype traditional image of Chinese women.  But for both genders, career pursues still remain in the center of their life while the family life is the final belonging, which shows both factors are complementary to each other and neither of them can be dispensed with. However, it is recognized in the report that Chinese entrepreneurs increasingly care more other factors influenced personal happiness, like health, life quality, social network, etc.

Besides family and career, more and more Chinese entrepreneurs pay attention to build up an active personal life or cultivate interesting habits to realize their self-values. The 3 most popular activities among Chinese entrepreneurs are travelling (54.9%), training & further education (52.3%), and Charity (40.9%). Chinese entrepreneurs have regular oversea travels or land excursions with a long distance, which could help release high work pressure while training and further education could help self-improvement.  Besides, charity could build up a social responsible image for themselves and their companies while educate their employees and children. Besides, Chinese entrepreneurs are paying more attention to personal habits. For example,  the chairman of ¨Vision Knight Capital (China) Fund I, L.P.¨ , WEI Zhe, has realized his dream to teach in the university and have more than 200 students in the class, while partner of GGV Capital, ZHUO Fumin, realize his self-value through keep pursuing in painting and photography.

About wealth management among Chinese entrepreneurs, the satisfaction score is 7.6 / 11. It is showed that Chinese entrepreneurs still have a higher preference to the traditional interpersonal finance service, which makes  ¨personal financial planner¨ and ¨professional financial planner¨ turn out the most satisfied factors in current Chinese personal wealth management.  At the same time it is also showed the current complex purchasing process of high-end finance product / service makes it the most unsatisfied factor. The participant entrepreneurs express, when evaluating the importance of wealth management, they value more the following 3 factors; a tailored invest project, a professional finance planner,  and an objective, independent and cross-industrial suggestion to allocate assets.

Edited by Simeng Zhang


Download the whole report (Chinese)

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