Our day started early for some of our team with a pre-arranged tennis match at 6am for Sampsa with some of our key sponsors. It was a wonderful opportunity to get a chance for personal contact, and it seems it was a tough but enjoyable match, since a follow-on game was agreed for tomorrow! KJ and Hyun Chung accompanied Sampsa to help with language, and we had a chance to get a little more feedback on our project scope.
Next on our agenda was a 30 min ride to Jeju National University where almost 50 students were waiting for a discussion on leadership and working in a global company. Ruth did a wonderful job setting up a panel discussion and we were all really impressed with the enthusiasm, engagement and intelligent questions from the students. We think Jeju has a wonderful future in the hands of this next generation of leaders.
Here is a photo of our session
…and our very serious looking team… grappling with a tough question..
Next stop was one of the areas most treasured in Jeju. These are damp, almost rain-forest areas consisting mainly of really (volcanic) rocky ground. Historically these areas were thought to be worthless as they could not support agriculture. Now the unique ecology is treasured and there is a program to buy back and preserve these pristine areas.
This photo shows a stone stack, seen everywhere in Jeju
Next we headed to a restaurant – surprisingly a pizza restaurant! Our motive was to interview the owner of this successful business. We had a great (huge!) lunch but heard a first hand of the challenges, business opportunities and thoughts on the island’s future from a local business owner.
Our last stop was at a guest house on the South-West part of the island – again interviewing the owner, Dean, who was originally from Manchester. Dean and his Korean wife are not from Jeju so gave us a another perspective. They are located right near one of Jeju’s ‘Olle’ famous walking paths so we were able to learn lots about that segment of the tourist market.Finally we headed back across the island – about 60 minutes in heavy traffic – to our home base for dinner and drinks to celebrate Sampsa’s birthday.
Happy birthday Sampsa!
A long Saturday indeed!