A Chinese firm has found a bizarre way of building team spirit among its female employees -- by making them slap each other repeatedly. On its 14th anniversary, cosmetic company Nanchang Jinhuayuan Meiye made its underperforming female staff kneel on stage in pairs and slap each other for a long time.
The video of this incident has gone viral on social media, in which more than 12 women are seen performing this strange act on a T-shaped runway. According to reports, these employees had been underperforming the entire year and their boss had given them this punishment to keep their jobs.
Local media reported that the company meant the exercise as a performance to build team spirit. Its spokesman Luo said that "it was nothing special but a test for the employees," reported Mirror. The office is based in Nanchang of Jiangxi Province and the anniversary celebration was on December 17, when this incident happened.
What is even more strange than the incident itself is that the company is vehemently defending it. "They were not simply slapping faces, it was a routine other companies are using as well. This is to build team spirit," said Luo. It is unclear which other companies Luo is referring to.
The act of punishment happened in front of hundreds of other employees at the end-of-year gala and the slapping continued until their boss instructed them to stop. At the background of the stage were the words "Ruthless Team", which is perhaps a phrase that the employer wants to associate with his company.
Another unnamed spokesperson from the company said, "It happened during the opening of our year-end gala, and only once. Our team is strong." However, viewers seem to disagree with this statement as the video evoked hugely negative reactions on social media.
Netizens called the act "employee abuse" and said that the incident should be investigated by the police as not only is it gross misconduct with employees, but it also reflects the sexist mentality of the company authorities.
This incident reminds us of another office escapade that made headlines in November. In a call centre in Warsaw, Poland, a female employee was made to walk around her office nude in a bid to boost the morale of her colleagues and improve their performance.
Although the employer was fired, it seems that the world has not learned any lesson. Employers are still resorting to crude and chauvinistic ways in the name of boosting their female staff's performance but instead making it a spectacle for their own amusement.
Check out the video below: