Judy Tong Wenhong was a Receptionist at Alibaba and then she became company’s Vice President

Before Judy Tong Wenhong became Alibaba’s “most inspiring partner,” she started her career in the company as a receptionist. Soon, because of her hard work, she was promoted to a customer service representative, and finally, as the company’s vice president.

Yes, you read it right, a transformation of career from a receptionist to the company’s VP.

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According to Women Of China, Tong applied for the post of administrative assistant in the company but did not pass the first interview. She applied again and was given a chance to work at the front desk in the company.

The story unfolds as Jack Ma, the company’s 1st CEO was allocating his company shares. He gave Tong 0.2% shares saying, the same shares with be worth 100 billion when Alibaba goes public. Jack requested his receptionist, who was loyal, hard-working to stay in the company and do not switch her job. The hope was if she stays long enough and Alibaba goes public in the market, she will get $100 million.

Alibaba struggled to cement its place in the global competition initially and Tong waited years after years, Alibaba never went public.

Tong, in 2004 asked Jack Ma when will Alibaba go public and Jack asked her to hang in there, the good times are just around the corner and soon our company will go public.

She waited for 10 years. In 2014, in September, Alibaba went public on the New York Stock Exchange. The company’s worth was $245.7 billion.

Tong, the former senior receptionist was promoted to the Vice President of Alibaba. She became a millionaire from a receptionist post in the company she joined 14 years ago with a worth of $320 million.

This is one of the world’s most amazing stories of loyalty, hard work, smartness, and consistency.

She knew Alibaba was struggling tirelessly to grow its business but she played an instrumental role by giving full support to her boss and the company.

The lesson here is, to become successful, never be eager and greedy for quick benefits.

Can you stay in a company for 14 years if you are not sure about the company’s future?

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Written by Hisham Sarwar


That is all you ever need to know about me but let me warn you, freelancing for me is a journey, certainly not a destination :)