Dare in the Difficulties: a Chinese Female Entrepreneur’s Journey

As Angel Xue observed evident shortcomings in the large corporate accounting business models, she decided to address them by starting her own firm: ShenWei Certified Public Accountants.

With the goal to provide honest, diligent, efficient initiatives with her partners, Xue established her business and opened her office doors in 2005.

One of the problems Xue saw was in the existing organizational structures of accounting firms. She wanted to build a group that would be more team-oriented and able to work more efficiently. One of her primary concerns was to improve employee benefits with her smaller, more efficient model.

Now with a running business and busy lifestyle, Xue draws motivation from her vision for her work. She explains, “If you look at your job as your lifetime work, you will have the motivation you need.”

angel xue

With 10 years of CPA experience, Xue had significant professional knowledge and skills to support her firm startup, but she also relied on the support of colleagues and family. “Family support is essential,” Xue said. “My husband has been quietly behind the scenes with economic support and a generous spirit. My parents are also my spiritual pillar.”  Xue’s father encouraged her to take the business risk, saying, “You go to open your own firm, but if some day you have nothing to eat, you are welcome back into my home.”

Xue has encountered many difficulties in establishing ShenWei Certified Public Accountants. At first, she faced a shortage of business, as well as legal limitations on the policies and size limit of the firm.

“To overcome these difficulties, first I had to adjust my state of mind, dare to keep trying, and dare to embrace the ‘failure’ state of mind.” Finding that not all her attempts were successful, Xue learned to “face failure in the challenge.”

When dealing with larger-scale challenges such as legal and policy barriers, Xue found there are two different approaches needed. “Some of the difficulties cannot be overcome by one person’s power; like with policy barriers, we can only wait for the environment to improve.” On the other hand, “some difficulties need to be faced positively, to find new methods and countermeasures.”

Xue still feels that, today, she is far from the kind of success she imagines for her firm and herself as a Chinese female entrepreneur. She strives to take one step at a time, however, saying that her strategy is simply “having an idea, and putting it into practice.”

Speaking to other women in China with goals of entrepreneurship, Xue shares seven key points that have guided her:

  1. Know your strengths, foster them, circumvent your weaknesses.
  2. To lay a solid foundation, master the skills needed and make full preparations before starting your business.
  3. When you face a difficulty, dare to accept defeat and have a positive attitude.
  4. Think strategically and plan long-term about the enterprises’ development
  5. To deal with everything in good order, plan and develop the habit of emphasizing execution.
  6. Your business enterprise needs a central idea, culture, and unity of thought to have harmonious development and emphasis on execution.
  7. Give full play to the power of the team.

Charlotte Cline-Smith

PR & Communications Manager

Cross-cultural consultant. ESL Professional. Writer. Editor. Working to share stories and grow together across cultures and communities.