Studying overseas means I am also an international traveler. During the internship, I’ve learned so much information, inspiration and insights into life and work.
- My unedited journal entries:
26th April 2021: I consulted with Iris Huang (the director of the Hibiscus Tree) who recommended LinkedIn Learning to me so that I can hone my technical skills such as customer service as well as food and beverage service. There are also many marketing courses on LinkedIn Learning, so I will study these online programs and improve my technical skills.
3rd May 2021: I consulted with my mentor at university who recommended Marie Forleo’s B-School and networking organization Business Chicks to me. I will develop my soft skills (learnability and verbal & written communication) as a result.
10th May 2021: The business owner has rewarded me because of my contribution. Although this is not a financial reward, the recognition is highly appreciated. Indeed, I feel more motivated now – the reward system is working and helps the organization to get the best out of every employee.
17th May 2021: The business owner has kindly shown me how to use Xero, the bookkeeping and accounting software. Although I studied accounting previously, this is the first time for me to actually use Xero. It is a very practical and useful tool.
- The original report:
This report discusses my placement at The Hibiscus Tree, a Chinese restaurant in Chinatown, the city of Adelaide. More exactly, this report provides comprehensive reflections on this placement since 21st May 2021 and analyses The Hibiscus Tree with the help of Porter’s Five Forces model: The bargaining power of the customers and suppliers are quite low & the threat of substitutes is very limited; however, the competitive rivalry and new entrants are rather strong. According to a political, economic, social & technological (PEST) analysis, it is apparent that The Hibiscus Tree has benefited from modern technological shifts in an impressive way – the bookkeeping & accounting software Xero has streamlined and automated the business’s financial management on a daily basis; a range of food delivery apps have helped the business to expand its services in the local area; Internet marketing strategies have brought more revenue to the restaurant. Nevertheless, the current political instability caused by the conflict between China and Australia, the current exchange rate as well as the low population growth rate in Adelaide are hindering the business growth right now. A detailed SWOT analysis is conducted as well: The Hibiscus Tree is deeply and luckily blessed with its internal strengths such as having easy access to authentic key ingredients from Sichuan Province, China & utilizing Internet marketing methods effectively and efficiently; nonetheless, its internal weaknesses cannot be ignored – this restaurant’s location is not ideal because it is not in a main street in Chinatown (the foot traffic is limited) & its space is fairly small (customers cannot have big dinner parties in The Hibiscus Tree). The development of COVID vaccines gives The Hibiscus Tree a good opportunity to grow its audience and convert its audience into customers. Another key opportunity is to be featured in a Chinese magazine called Yiben Magazine, thereby attracting more people to the restaurant. However, unfortunately, the current global economy has been severely affected by the pandemic; as a consequence, many individuals are not willing to spend money on going out for dinner. Yet it is believed that the upcoming election in Australia will probably improve the Australian economy and encourage people to spend money in cafes and restaurants in the near future. Since The Hibiscus Tree is a small restaurant, the size of the organization has helped me to identify its Mission, Vision, Values, Frameworks as well as Systems rapidly. Further, because the organization has a small team, I am able to participate in many different aspects of the business, which has allowed me to learn a lot from this placement. As I set practical and realistic goals at the beginning of my placement, I have already achieved those goals: becoming an effective communicator and offering high-quality customer service.
“From now on I will focus on my new goals: building a powerful network in the tourism and hospitality industry & maximizing my productivity at work without suffering from burnout as an international traveler.”