Jingdong CEO Xu Lei’s “two sided life”: three tattoos, love to listen to rock and roll, love to play football


Welcome to follow the wechat subscription number of “creating notes”: sinacchangshiji
Wen / Fang Yuanjing, Tangshan
Source: Micro story (ID: xiaoweigushi)
Original title: Xu Lei, CEO of Jingdong retail group’s “two sided life”: the micro story of “618 Godfather” who never takes an umbrella, “teases” Ma Dong and sponsors CSL
“I dedicated my first live experience to selling houses,” Xu Lei, CEO of Jingdong retail, told the micro story.
On May 22, Zhongjun yunjingtai Jingdong real estate self owned flagship store opened its live broadcast selling room, and Xu Lei himself took the platform. But the debut show even “didn’t have a detailed and thorough plan”, Xu Lei said it was a suggestion from his colleagues at that time, “in order to support his work, he was also eager to try, so he went on stage.”.
As a result, in just one hour, more than 4 million people watched the live broadcast, and the volume of transactions reached 2.6 billion yuan.
After the first show, Xu Lei appeared to “love” live. On the eve of 618, he and Ma Dong, Da Zhangwei and Guo Qilin “loved” the live broadcast of the office’s own refrigerator.
Xu Lei’s “live show” has repeatedly set off a climax in the 618 round of Jingdong. When the minute hand and the hour hand crossed the position of 0:00 on June 19 at the same time, “269.2 billion” Jingdong 618 new record accumulated the amount of orders, which was once again set and recorded in history.
Also in the morning of this day, Jingdong officially landed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange and completed the second listing. “Thanks to the great era, countless individuals and enterprises have been given the opportunity to pursue their dreams and achieve themselves.” Xu Lei preached at the scene.
Only in such an important day of “once in a hundred years”, can Xu Lei rarely wear a suit and dress, and “speak seriously” at the scene. This is said to be his second time to attend the company’s action in a suit after he arrived in Jingdong.
On the day of Jingdong Hong Kong’s listing, Xu Lei put on a suit
In people ‘s stereotype, the CEO of a large group always wears a stiff suit, tie and a long voice But Xu Lei is totally different. He has three tattoos. He likes to listen to rock music and often “roars” on the court on weekends.
People who have played with Xu Lei say that Xu Lei is the “big brother” on the court. He can often see the tactical and strategic problems of players in advance and directly scold them.
In a 30s video shot in a match, Xu Lei points to a member of the team and swears, from beginning to end, until the member runs to the right position and makes a long pass.
But Xu Lei is very casual. From the second year he joined Jingdong, he took off his suit and tie and wore loose clothes.
In 2008, when Jingdong held its annual meeting in a resort, Xu Lei took his daughter-in-law and Teddy at home. Of course, during the meeting, his daughter-in-law walked Teddy in the resort.
In an interview with micro story, he wore orange print limited T-shirt and khaki wide leg pants, different styles of metal and woven bracelets on his right wrist, metal chains and Buddha beads on the left wrist watch, and “feather leaves” silver necklace of Indian style fashion classic Goro’s on his neck.
He said that this kind of self is the most real, there is no need to hide it.
But it is such a middle-aged trendy man with strong contrast and full of contradictory characteristics who first proposed “6.18”, which also turned the festival from Jingdong store festival to the annual carnival of the entire e-commerce industry.
If we have to give Xu Lei a label, no matter it’s “father 618”, “music obsession” or “madman on the court”, it’s not appropriate. Only Xu Lei himself can tell how much he really looks like.
The “traitor” out of the book shop
Xu Lei grew up in the army compound. His parents and brother were soldiers, but he was not the only one.
Xu Lei’s parents are both military school teachers. According to other people’s opinions, he is a good scholar. The people in the army yard come from all over the world, and their living habits are different.
Strictly speaking, Xu Lei was born in such a small miniature environment of China, and he was not so like a pure native of Beijing.
In addition, the children coming out of the army compound have several characteristics. They are very strict with rules and regulations and have a strong sense of time. However, they are more likely to produce some perverse and rebellious talents.
Xu Lei is like this. You said he was rebellious, but he was very disciplined. He even gave himself time to play football once a week. The next week’s itinerary will be determined on Wednesday.
He likes to plan everything and doesn’t like unplanned changes, even surprises. “I hope that everything is under control. Suddenly, a good thing falls on me. Others will think it’s unexpected joy, but it’s more uncomfortable for me. Only what I can predict is the safest.”.
You say he is disciplined, but he is not willing to follow the rules. Xu Lei said that the last sentence he liked from childhood was, “everyone else is like this, so do you.”.
“I don’t know why. I have developed such a viewpoint since childhood: when encountering any upsurge, I must analyze it by myself, and I always like to make judgments independently”. For Xu Lei, the disciplined environment of the army compound also urges him to maintain the ability of independent judgment when encountering anything.
Similar people are not in the minority. “Some people look like ‘hunks’, but you can see them after a long time. In fact, they are the most disciplined people who know the rules of the game,” Xu said.
However, his rebellious character still brought him a little trouble. “As soon as I go home, my parents criticize me. They think I’m rebellious, and I have a lot to do. Of course, I don’t say much now,” said Xu Lei.
After graduation, Xu Lei went to work in a state-owned enterprise. The strict system and clear hierarchy of state-owned enterprises have made Xu Lei “serious” in his work.
Wearing a suit, tie and handbag every day, “is the” old state-owned enterprise model “you often see on TV, like the head of a contractor.” Xu Lei said that this dress habit has been maintained from graduation to 2009.
After three years of work, Xu Lei is catching up with the Internet wave, and wants to go to an Internet company in particular. Basically, Xu Lei, who has developed into an Internet company of a large factory, has submitted resumes.

“How hot was the Internet then? As long as you have worked in the last Internet company for a week and come to apply, the company will dare to ask for it, but if you haven’t worked in the Internet company, no one will ask for you, “said Xu Lei.
In 2000, Xu Lei went to Lenovo. He said Lenovo’s management is even stricter than that of state-owned enterprises. “All my vocational training was completed in Lenovo’s two and a half years.”.
All the changes took place at the age of 32.
That year was the second year for Xu Lei to join JD. The environment of Internet enterprises and all the past experiences changed qualitatively in this year from quantitative change. Xu Lei felt that he understood.
Xu Lei recalled that at the age of 32, nothing really happened to him, but he suddenly felt that he should be more real, “I want to understand one thing, I’m not doing myself,” Xu Lei told the micro story.
In the company, he is a manager, but in his own “sky”, he is a “die loyal” music and football, do not like to go with the flow, independent thinking.
So that year, Xu Lei of Scorpio tattooed himself with the first tattoo – an “independent” scorpion. At the same time, he also thoroughly “rushed” to his persistence and love in both sides of work and life.
“I want to understand one thing. If I just want to achieve better performance, I’m not doing myself,” Xu Lei told the micro story. At that time, he didn’t want to be bound by rules on the other side of his work.
“Ashes” rock fans and football “old guns”
A person’s hobbies can often see the other side hidden in the workplace and society.
Xu Lei has loved music since childhood, and has heard almost all kinds of music.
Xu Lei loves to listen to hip-hop. At that time, he liked MC hammer, a famous American rap singer in the late 1980s.
“Basically, I started to listen to his songs when he was on fire. At that time, it was not hip-hop, but rap music,” said Xu Lei. “All the old guns knew the name, and everyone was very excited when I told them the name.”.
When I was in college, “China fire” held a music debut in Wangfujing children’s theater. A girl who often exchanged rock music with Xu Lei got two tickets and took Xu Lei to the scene.
“When I arrived at the scene, I would ‘collapse’,” said Xu Lei. It was the first time that he saw the legendary punk hairstyle, big cock crown, tattoo, ring on the mouth and ears. “I thought all the” ghosts and monsters “in Beijing came.”.
But it is such a scene that Xu Lei still remembers. At that time, each of them sang three songs, “in addition to the music, the DJ on the spot, the feeling of that summer, the feeling of the sun shining on his body, and the taste in the air, I still remember it now.” Xu Lei was still very intoxicated when he talked about it.
In order to study the classification of rock and roll, Xu Lei found a book “history of world rock and roll”, which he turned in his dormitory every day.
He also wanted to make his own music. In order to play Cui Jian’s flower house girl, he got a guitar. But after practicing the first chord, he gave up, “it’s too hard. The fingers are badly worn, not the material.”.
In order to save money to buy tapes, he split the 1 yuan pocket money given by his family every day into two parts, one of which was “biting his teeth” to buy the cheapest “meichu” brand instant noodles at that time, and the other one was directly stuffed into his pocket, then he turned around to play football, and the money saved was used to buy 4.5 yuan tapes at last.
“It was the time to grow up, but I only ate instant noodles, although I’m fat now, it’s empty,” Xu Lei joked. That time must have affected his physical development.
Xu Lei loves watching football and playing football. He plays as a striker in Jingdong’s internal Football League.
Xu Lei has a teammate, Liu Zi (Xiaoming), who often “stubbles” in the big fields of the capital. He always talks about the football story of the capital. For striker Xu Lei, he has one word, “old gun”.
“Xu Lei really likes football. He plays, ponders and likes to watch it.” Liu Zi introduced that Xu Lei is the “guest of honor” of the national security competition. He buys tickets all the year round. When he sees the exciting competition, he will send out a circle of friends.
But Xu Lei doesn’t take playing football as a pastime. He is more “real” than anyone in the team.
“He often sees the problems of the team’s tactics and players’ strategies in advance, and then starts to scold them,” said Xu Lei, a teammate of Xu Lei’s football team. Everyone is “afraid” of Xu Lei. “Sometimes you just mean something. People can see it at a glance and roar at your heart.”.
On August 14, 2019, in the group match of Jingdong Football League, Xu Lei took a photo with the team members after the match
Another teammate, a long, said Xu Lei played not only as a striker, but also as a “coach”, “off-site coach” or even “on-site coach”.
“Take the board to arrange the tactics, adjust the personnel and formation of the whole team, always pay attention to the changes of you and our two teams on the field, and then give orders.” Arong recalled that sometimes, when the players played a good ball, Xu Lei would also be excited like a child.
According to Xu Lei’s own explanation, “no matter whether it’s a game or not, we should be serious in our work, especially when we play badminton or table tennis, it doesn’t matter if we play blindly. But if it is a team, there is a person who is not serious, which has an impact on everyone. “.
“So I can’t stand other people’s kicking. I put my feelings into sports here. With such great effort, I can’t stand to cooperate with you to stir up here,” Xu Lei told the micro story.
Years of growth did not kill his love for football and music, but increased experience made him play more “thief” and listen to music “more rational”.
“Xu is very smart on the court, even a little” cunning “, Liu said, Xu Lei’s striker often meets the” siege “of the defenders. “But Xu, who is four or five, can often use his own skills and” cunning “strategy to easily create positions and seize points in the face of stronger defense.”
Xu Lei also admits that he is more “thief” when playing football. He doesn’t play like a young man. He starts to pay attention to the rhythm and skills of attack, defense and running position.

“When attacking, someone must be pestering you. What little skill do you use to make him tired. You see all the professional players are the same. At a certain age, they don’t run much. So far, Messi’s running is not as much as I am, “Xu Lei joked.
Xu Lei always wears different styles of metal and woven bracelets on his wrist
Listening to music is the same reason most of the time.
Xu Lei likes to listen to the live music. As long as it’s the concert of his favorite band, as long as it’s in Asia, he will fly as far as he can.
However, no matter how excited the fans around him are, he seldom goes out of control and shouts together. Instead, he looks at it quietly, and can analyze the work calmly in his head.
Only one concert made Xu Lei cry from beginning to end. In 2006, Cui Jian held his first concert to learn about the new Long March. “When I think of melody, I can’t,” Xu Lei recalled.
“This man has been with you since he was young, but you can’t see him, you can only listen to his music. Listening to his songs, you have been accompanied by his voice for so many years, from a young boy without mature development to college, love and work, “said Xu Lei.
This is why he likes music: not music itself, but the memories brought by music, not only hearing, taste, temperature and emotion.
For such a rationalist, hobby is not a busy pastime, but a persistence that needs to pay the cost of time and energy.
“A lot of young people talk about their hobbies with me when they are interviewing.” Xu Lei doesn’t think that’s really like it. “What’s the real love? To pay, time or money, if not paid, it is not a hobby, just a simple enjoyment. “.
“Joking” Ma Dong
The “618 Godfather” who sponsors CSL
Some time ago, Xu Lei took a photo of eating and drinking with Ma Dong, Zhang Yadong and song Ke in the circle of friends. Several friends in the photo laughed happily. The circle of friends also attached “only music accompaniment is worth praising”.
Xu Leifa’s circle of friends
Everyone guessed, is Jingdong going to sponsor the next season “wonderful flowers say”, “band’s summer”?
Xu Lei replied with a smile that he was very relaxed and happy to meet these friends. When I saw Ma Dong in the early years, the first sentence I said was to “tease” Ma Dong, saying that I had never seen “wonderful flower said”.
Under the strong recommendation of Ma Dong, he insisted on watching it for half a season last year, but at last he didn’t insist on it. “No program can cover all people, I just happen not to be its audience.”.
Dinner of Xu Lei, Ma Dong, song Ke, Zhang Yadong, etc
“Marketing is not under my specific jurisdiction. It’s not up to me to decide whether to sponsor or not,” Xu said. But in fact, it belongs to many marketing cases of JD, including many investment cooperation related to sports and music.
Liu said that he once saw the signed jerseys and shoes of Messi and Guoan players in Xu Lei’s office. Jingdong once sponsored the China Super League in 2010 and the world cup in 2018. Xu Lei is a guest every time. He also promoted the sponsorship and investment of Beijing University of science, a strong traditional youth football team in the capital behind the scenes.
Macy’s uniform hanging in Xulei’s conference room
“No matter how bad Chinese football is, it depends on the future. Xu Lei knows that,” Liu said.
But no matter how fond Xu Lei is of sports and music, he is not the one who makes emotional decisions.
On March 17, 2010, Jingdong announced to sponsor CSL, which was the most disturbing time since Xu Lei started marketing.
“At that time, Chinese football was scolded as shit by everyone. We announced that sponsoring the new CSL was also greatly concerned by the media. Everyone wondered how someone would sponsor Chinese football,” Xu Lei recalled.
At that time, the marketing expenses accounted for 30% of JD’s annual marketing expenses. “If this money is spent and has no effect or negative effect, will the company’s traffic and marketing bring disaster?”
For a whole week, Xu Lei couldn’t sleep all night. “I’m thinking, deducing and calculating whether this carrier can help us achieve the maximum benefits and returns.” a week later, Xu Lei decided to “do it”!
Another thing that makes Xu Lei hard to feel is that in 2013, he first proposed that Jingdong should do “6.18”.
That time he choked. “At the beginning, only three people recognized me.” Xu Lei still remembered his original state and was so excited that he choked. “Maybe it’s because he had been doing marketing, plus his emotional feeling at that time, so everyone agreed with me.”.
Xu Lei thought at that time that truth was in the hands of a few people. “Since I study this every day and have a clear judgment, this truth is in my hands,” said Xu Lei. Marketing is also one of his passions. He is willing to give everything he loves to achieve.
When Xu Lei didn’t officially join Jingdong and sent an email to Liu qiangdong as a consultant, he now remembers the first sentence: “what is marketing? It is the combination of reason and sensibility, and the combination of science and art.
“You can’t be too perceptual or rational, you can’t just look at numbers, you can see it as a science, but you can’t just pursue artistic expression.”. Later, in 2009, Xu Lei became a “Jingdong person”, and the CMO of Jingdong group went to the CEO of Jingdong retail group.
“Now, ‘618’ has become a concept that the whole industry will have. I think it’s very good to prove that my adherence at that time was right,” said Xu Lei.
Tattoo into the “body” of him,
Establishing a new retail order in Jingdong
At the age of 32, Xu Lei tattooed himself with a scorpion, but left it in the shelter of his clothes.
Then, the position of the tattoo gradually revealed, and the third tattoo was that he simply remained on the arm.
“I don’t like to talk about the meaning of my tattoo. What do you think is what it is? It’s already a part of my body,” Xu said.
Xu Lei is like a complex of contradictions, internal rationality and external sensibility, so that an unspeakable tacit agreement rule has been formed between his Jingdong retail group and Xu Lei.
“If I join JD now, with my previous qualifications, I may not pass the interview,” said Xu Lei.

In 2007, Jingdong needs to grow at the fastest speed, prove its vitality and stand firmly in the “bloody” e-commerce industry. At that time, we didn’t need too many rules, “as long as we can grow rapidly,” Xu said.
But now Jingdong is different. It’s already a giant with 220000 employees, “it’s such a large volume, with a high degree of personnel complexity. Frankly speaking, it’s great to bring everyone out alone, but you will find out why everyone can’t play together,” Xu Lei said.
In 2018, Xu Lei served as CEO of Jingdong retail group (the former Jingdong Mall), and began to rethink the structure and rules of Jingdong retail. But for nearly half a year, he didn’t take out the action of “three fire in the new post”.
He gave an example: “in a watch, there are all kinds of big gears and small gears. The error rate of travel time is plus or minus one second in a year. How is this accomplished?”.
“Because there are rules, everyone has their own value and position. If every gear doesn’t turn by itself according to the rules, the watch must not be allowed to turn there.
Xu Lei believes that the more complex and large the business, the more rules he must build, strengthen and implement.
On the evening of December 21, 2018, Jingdong group issued an internal letter, announcing that Jingdong Mall (now “Jingdong retail group”) has made a large-scale organizational structure adjustment, transforming the original vertical integration structure with category as the core into a customer-centered front, middle and back office structure.
The whole Jingdong Mall is becoming more and more like a “watch” defined by Xu Lei. Each module becomes a gear, while Xu Lei is responsible for the “watch repairer” who makes calibration and observation behind it.
“In the whole strategy meeting, I’m the director in chief. I don’t control what I discuss and draw conclusions in several chapters,” Xu said.
Now under Xu Lei’s “calibration”, this “precision watch” is gradually moving towards the rhythm he hopes to achieve. In the face of the pressure of economic downturn in 2019, the annual financial report of Jingdong in 2019 has delivered the best answer in recent years: in 2019, the annual net income of Jingdong group is 576.9 billion yuan (about 82.9 billion US dollars), an increase of 24.9% year on year.
“The more I look back, the more confident I am,” Xu said.
“I walk in the rain and never take an umbrella;
I have my own sky, it never rains. ”
Looking at Xu Lei’s circle of friends, his wechat signature has been kept for ten years, and has never been replaced: “I walk in rainy days, never take an umbrella; I have my own sky, it never rains.”.
Xu Lei can’t remember the origin of this sentence, but he is really a man who doesn’t take an umbrella in rainy days.
“I especially like rain. When it rains, it’s melancholy and the temperature is unique,” said Xu Lei, who didn’t take an umbrella but only wore a raincoat. Even now, he has all kinds of sportswear. “When I go out, people around me take umbrellas. I don’t. I like the feeling of rain.”. “I’m not afraid of these things,” said Xu Lei.
Xu Lei, 46, runs one of Jingdong’s core businesses, retail.
In the face of heavy work and complicated competition environment, Xu Lei’s face has always been disdained by “indifferent”, but people who are familiar with him can deeply feel that behind his judgment and decision-making, there is a sea of calm and fearless “ferocious” force.
As Xu Lei’s third small seal script tattoo on the inner side of his right arm said, “it doesn’t matter what he fears.”.
This sentence is integrated into Xu Lei’s tattoo of “body”, which comes from the first sentence of “if it doesn’t matter, there is no fear; if there is nothing, there is no fear”.
Indeed, Xu Lei, who is “indifferent” and “fearless”, never takes an umbrella when walking in the rain.
“I am gradually reconciling with the world.” For him, from the age of 32, rules and order have been found in his work and career. “The world doesn’t work the way you understand it. There are some things you have to accept, but you won’t go with the flow. It’s very important.”.
For persistent and loving things, he is still persistent and determined. The music and football they loved since childhood, and even the love, care and promotion of Chinese music and sports, they, like Xu Lei’s tattoo, have integrated into their own “body”, firm and calm.
Xu Lei has his own sky. It never rains.
(statement: This article only represents the author’s point of view, not Sina’s point of view.)