Staff Spotlight: Bao Li Wang

China Country Manager


Bao Li completed her Bachelor of Arts Degree in English at Northwestern University of Political Science & Law in Xi’an. She was a local Chinese volunteer with Global Volunteers' program and was hired by the Sino American Society as its representative in 2001. She has worked with every team of volunteers since that time.

In 2005, Bao Li was hired as the Assistant China Country Manager and was promoted to Country Manager in 2009. She leads all teams of volunteers in China.

What is your favorite travel memory?

My favorite travel memory is when I visited the United States for the first time after having worked with hundreds of American volunteers. I was able to stay with my volunteer friends in three very different cities in the U.S.: Boston, New York, and San Francisco. I was able to experience staying in several American people’s homes and saw with my own eyes for the first time what America is like and how American people live.

It was fun and eye-opening.

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

I have been with Global Volunteers for over ten years. Working with mostly Americans has certainly helped me improve my English speaking skills.

English is my second language and I didn't speak it very well when I first started working with volunteers. Also, I never believed waging peace and promoting justice would be something I would be able to accomplish, but I am convinced now that I am working towards that goal by working together with my colleagues as a team.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

On one of the programs, a volunteer teacher was teaching a group of English teachers.

On the first day of class, the volunteer closed the door to the classroom and asked the students how and why they came and said they could be honest because whatever they said would be kept in this classroom. One of the teachers said, “I was asked to come by my school principal. I was so angry because it was my summer vacation and I had made plans to go travel with my family.”

Then, on the last day of the program, the volunteer once again closed the classroom door and asked for honest feedback from the students. The same student said, “I am sorry for what I said on the first day. I am so glad that I have come. It has been a very meaningful program and I learned so much from you. If there is another chance, I’d like to come again, even if I have to pay to come.”

If you could go on any program that your company offers, which one would you choose and why?

There are so many places I want to go to. But if I can choose only one, I will choose to go to Tanzania.

I have never been to an African country. To me, it’s a totally different and completely new culture, which I am so curious to see and learn about and experience.

Also, what our company is doing there sounds absolutely fascinating and the feedback from our volunteers has all been very positive.

What makes your company unique? When were you especially proud of your team?

No matter what we do, promoting cross-cultural understanding and building friendships is the key and goal.

We are about serving others, but we don’t just simply work to complete a project. To us, making sure that people from different cultures work together, hand in hand, so they have opportunities to learn about and from each other, then depart with a better understanding of and meaningful relationship with each other is the most important.

What do you believe to be the biggest factor in being a successful company?

Having a healthy company culture, I believe, is the biggest factor in making a company successful.

A healthy and positive company culture encourages the staff to be welcoming, friendly, respectful, supportive of each other, and that makes everyone feel comfortable enough to work together, communicate more openly, and share opinions and ideas, which leads to proficiency and productivity.