Understanding Chinese Business Etiquette

Author: Naveen Marasinghe

With China’s booming economy and increased industrial growth, it would be hard to ignore this Asian giant’s potential for offering lucrative business opportunities.

In as much as the opportunities for investment are enticing, many business people will discover that breaking into the Chinese business culture and etiquette could prove to be a bit daunting for the beginner. Coming into constant contact with Chinese business people does require a certain amount of learning of their culture, if success is to be achieved.

Much of Chinese belief, whether it be about life or work ethic revolves around the Confucian thinking of harmonious relationships. When doing business in China, Confucianism does come into play, and usually subtle expressions are what is usually used during negotiations to avert a conflict. And often customs involve the maintaining of proper demeanor.

This aspect of proper demeanor translates into the composure that business associates have when dealing with their Chinese counterparts. Usually meetings begin as they would with a hand shake and a simple nod. Caution is advised when shaking hands, as one to firmly or too vigorously could imply that the individual is aggressive. This would automatically influence the business setting.

This is especially important since the Chinese rarely like physical contact. Such contact may take place if a host needs to guide a guest to a room or a meeting. At such instances contact should be confined to the holding of a sleeve or the cuff of a shirt. Patting or putting one’s arms round the shoulders of a business partner is not considered as acceptable.

When interacting, it is important that one’s body language and movement does not give way to portraying actual feelings even if discussions aren’t going the way one would expect. The posture should remain formal and being attentive is considered by the Chinese as having self control and therefore worthy of being respected. When foreign business people earn the respect of Chinese organizations, they find that many doors which were once difficult to enter will automatically be loosened and dealings become easier.

When business cards are exchanged it maybe a good idea to try and get one side of the card translated into Chinese. The people also consider gold as being an auspicious colour so having those translated details in gold coloured ink could be considered as a plus. Also when business cards are accepted it is always best to carry a separate case to place them in rather than folding them into a pocket or one’s wallet.

After an exhilarating conference any business traveller will look forward to some rest and relaxation and there isn’t a better way to find some peace of mind that at a home away from home accommodation offered at an international group of hotels.  A hotel such as The Langham offers luxury hotels worldwide, offering facilities that cater especially to the business traveller.

Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/destinations-articles/understanding-chinese-business-etiquette-1284751.html

About the Author

Pushpitha Wijesinghe is an experienced independent freelance writer. He specializes in providing a wide variety of content and articles related to the travel hospitality industry.