NST Viral

#NSTviral: Run for your...bonuses?

KUALA LUMPUR: A Chinese paper company based in Guangdong, China, recently went viral for making its staff run at least 50km to qualify for their annual year-end bonuses.

According to a news report in Guangdong Daily, the Dongpo Paper Company replaced the traditional annual performance bonus with a new reward system—fitness and running—aimed at motivating its employees to keep fit and healthy.

The company has over 100 employees, and they specialise in producing photocopy paper, computer printing paper, and various printed materials.

Under the new policy, an employee will be rewarded based on the amount of exercise they have undertaken. The exercise includes mountain hiking and speed walking. The distance is calculated by apps on the employees' phones.

An employee will enjoy a full 100 per cent monthly bonus if they run 50km a month; 60 per cent for running 40km; and 30 per cent for 30km. Those who run 100km a month will receive an extra 30 per cent.

Hardcore runners will receive a free pair of running shoes if they can clock 50km for six consecutive months.

According to the company's official WeChat account, its boss, Lin Zhiyong, explained the idea behind the new policy. "I want my employees to be fit and healthy. A company can last a long time when its employees are healthy," he said.

Lin said he spent the last three years encouraging his employees to enjoy sports and fitness. He also claimed that he had scaled Mount Everest twice, once in 2022 and another time earlier this year.

On Weibo, which is the Chinese equivalent of the X social media platform, users were divided on Lin's idea.

One person wrote, "You'd have to run 3km a day in order to meet the monthly target of 100km. Is the company training track athletes?"

Another user expressed his concern for the employees' health. "Running will hurt their knees. Depending on their age, it could also trigger a heart attack," it read.

Despite Lin's unorthodox method, an unnamed company employee supported the idea. "It's like killing two birds with one stone. We get both health and money," the person wrote.

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