Huawei the Ren Zhengfei Way: The "Tough Guy" and His Corporate Philosophy

Research output: Other contributionCase Studies


This case mainly describes the leadership of Ren Zhengfei, the founder of Huawei technologies co., LTD., focusing on how his leadership behavior embodies the distinctive style of "paternalistic leadership", what challenges he now faces, and how to adjust leadership style. In founding Huawei, Ren integrated his military experience into the enterprise culture and system construction, emphasizing qualities like clear goalsetting, discipline, sacrifice, and absolute obedience. At the same time, he adheres to the idea of "taking care of the troops" and rewards employees with high salaries. Under this system, Huawei has become a fierce and progressive enterprise and has developed rapidly. However, with the change of market environment and employee characteristics, this management model has began to expose more and more problems, causing a decline in both corporate performance and employee satisfaction. Huawei must conduct fundamental changes in business, culture and management systems.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages16
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2018

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Case type

Field Case

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Published by

China Europe International Business School


  • Huawei
  • Ren Zhengfei
  • leadership
  • paternalistic leadership
  • authoritative leadership

Case studies discipline

  • Human Resource Management

Case studies industry

  • Information, Media & Telecommunications


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