Business SinoBeat

Restaurant staff in Shenyang kowtow to managers in ‘feudal’ ceremony

Staff at a hotpot restaurant in northeast China’s Liaoning province were spotted kowtowing to their manager on Wednesday and thanking him for giving them their jobs.

Kowtowing staff

Kowtowing staff. Photo: Sina.

Dozens of employees assembled on the intersection of Jianshe Road and Aigong Street in provincial capital Shenyang for what web users have described as a “feudal” ceremony, kneeling on the ground, knocking their heads against the street and yelling, “Thank you, manager, for giving us work!”

Kowtowing staff

Kowtowing staff. Photo: Sina.

Kowtowing staff

Kowtowing staff. Photo: Sina.

A psychologist consulted by mainland media suggested that the act “could result on shame, fear and anxiety on the part of employees,” while a legal professional said that “trampled on workers’ rights.”

According to restaurant management, however, they were merely fostering “a culture of thanksgiving within the company culture.”

Liu Xiaonan, a researchers as the Liaoning Academy of Social Sciences, said that the boss’s explanation is “far-fetched.”

“Ancient means” such as the kowtow “do not suit a modern business,” Liu said, adding that “real corporate culture means mutual respect and positively motivating employees.”

Restaurant staff in Shenyang kowtow to managers in 'feudal' ceremony