China: Make friendships first, then profits

2008-05-24 — Good Characters (Leave a message)

Read this article from Entrepreneur Magazine:

The Chinese want to do business with individuals–not companies–so cultivating friendships is crucial.

Rather than cutting to the chase, the Chinese prefer a courtship filled with get-to-know-you banter and big banquets full of mysterious delicacies.

Mike Saxon, author of An American’s Guide to Doing Business in China, warns that a seemingly solid rapport can still be trumped by yuan. “People who go over to China think it’s the China of centuries ago: Confucius, everybody’s honorable and whatever–and it’s not! It’s a different culture today,” explains Saxon, who adds that the 36 Stratagems, a collection of Chinese proverbs, is part of the basic Chinese gestalt.

Taking time to forge friendships with Chinese business partner is crucial, says Silas Deane.


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