A disturbing video of a Chinese bank's effort to improve employee performance -- through public, violent spankings of employees -- was posted yesterday in a BBC article. The video, which will make even the most hardened U.S. compliance officer cringe, shows a line of employees from Changzhi Rural Commercial Bank being subjected to an awful "team-building" workshop in which a corporate trainer spanks them with a paddle in front of a roomful of over 200 of their co-workers.

According to the BBC, the trainer asked the different employees why they are "ranked the lowest today" before spanking them. The employees responded with answers such as "[b]ecause I have not exceeded myself," "I did not coordinate with my team" and "I lacked courage." Shanghaist reports that after the third round of spankings, one of the women on stage tried to "shield herself from the coming blow, but the [trainer] warns her to 'remove your hand!'"


The corporate trainer, Jiang Yang, followed this spanking exercise with a "hair-cutting punishment" in which he cut the women’s hair and shaved the men’s heads. You can view the video in the tweet below. I will rate the video as PG-13 but I will also rate it as distressing: 

I mean... #China

'Chinese bank boss suspended after hiring a 'motivational' trainer to spank his employees'https://t.co/gNvd2XplsF

— Phil (@marcauxpolo) June 21, 2016

In case you were wondering, this sort of conduct is not acceptable in China. Two executives of Changzhi Rural Commercial Bank, including the bank's chairman and deputy governor, have been suspended for "failing to strictly check the content of the course," and the bank's regulator (Shanxi Rural Credit Co-operatives Union) has launched an investigation. The regulator also stated that the bank is helping its employees seek compensation from the training company.

The corporate trainer, Yang, issued an apology in which he said he'd used the spanking "training model" for years and that it was not instigated by bank executives. He said the episode also was a "great lesson to myself, that it reminds me I should improve my teaching methods."