Business ethics is not Just a set of rules that dictate how to behave on business meetings. In extreme situations, it is the key to the success in negotiations, but its Ignorance can cause failure of the entire undertaking. Especially when parties that attempt to cooperate are different culturally and mentally, as in the case of ‘western countries’ and the Middle Kingdom. Social bond as a base for successful business Chinese entrepreneurs are characterized by pre;–social approach. This means that for the counterparts of the country It Is very Important that before business there would strong social bonds created between them.
Such process Is slow and the Investments are long-term one. It will take a lot of time for Chinese to fell In ones company as a family. However, one can accelerate this process by hospitality, conversations on private topics and simple gestures, Like using words: “Make yourself at home. ” It Is worth to establish a close relationship with a potential business partner In China for another reason. In the culture of the Middle Kingdom, In contrast to the view prevailing In the countries of western Europe, effective cleverness and cunning are the qualities desirable in a good businessman.
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Lies that enable to achieve the goal, are not seen as immoral behavior, improper or unethical. However, such an approach in relation to the relatives, as family and friends are not permitted. Therefore, through closer ties with Chinese partners one can count on the full and honest cooperation. Refusal = rudeness One of the most surprising and dangerous traps one can fall into when conducting business negotiations in China is the belief prevailing in that culture, that the refusal is an expression of rudeness. Therefore, from the potential Chinese partner one will ever hear the words, “no”, “disagree”, “do not like your idea”.
The rule is: the more reverently and with greater Joy your potential partner is saying goodbye to you after the visit, the less likely it is that there will be any cooperation between you. When he or she is not interested in working with us he will paradoxically reacts with great enthusiasm on the proposal given by us (which probably will make happy those, who do not know the business ethics in China). Such person will praise our idea and initiative, but he or she will say that has to think about it. Following any future steps elated to the implementation of this cooperation will never be taken.
Country of unequal people In China, there is now a belief that people are not created equally. The hierarchy Is respected everywhere. Customarily, the place In the hierarchy is associated with the achievements of the individual, but the order of rank usually does not defer too much from the age of its members. In contrast to the prevailing view among Europeans, In China the most important concepts are not the Individual one, but the one related to social order and harmony. This system of values has a significant Impact on the verbal business ethics existing In China.
For this reason, the presentation of members present at the meeting takes place In a hierarchical order: the head of the delegation talks only with the head of the Chinese team, and vice versa, and host of the meeting on his right seats his mall partner. Business Cards During the first meeting with Chinese partners one should remember to carry own and position. Thanks to them it is possible to evaluate the position of the person with whom we are dealing. Traditionally in China, handing business cards should be with both hands. After receiving a business card to one need to read it carefully, and only then it can be put away or hide.
Gifts Also the value of the gifts handed over to Chinese contractors must be appropriate to the place in the hierarchy of each individual. These gifts do not have to, and indeed should not be practical and useful. The gifts related to the country from which one came are mostly welcome. The Chinese partner will be able to then share them with others. Gifts should be wrapped in the red or gold paper Good gifts: if the gift consists of a few pieces of items then one should offer two items a pair) Bad gifts: do not give four copies of an object (two pairs), because the Chinese pronunciation of the word “four” sounds similar to “death. For the same reason, a bad gesture is to give the clock standing. Its name is the same as the word “end”. Culture of eating How will a business meeting in China? With high probability your potential partner wants to start from a common meal. The role of food in Chinese culture is extremely important. It is an intimate and sacred process, and therefore only people of low social status eat in a large, open hall. Despite appearances, the knowledge of this object is very important for people who want to negotiate with residents of the Middle-Kingdom.
If you want to meet them at about 12 o’clock the appointment has to take place in a restaurant. To the Chinese, the time from 12 to 14 is a time of eating lunch, and no matter how important decisions need to be taken or how important partners they must meet, at a given moment, the meal is always a priority for them. Seating at the table, not leaps immediately to discuss business, because the time for it comes only at the end. During the meal, private matters, weather, as well as on other topics unrelated with our work life should be discussed.
Due to the fact that often the most important contracts are signed Just after the common meal, it is useful to know a few rules that distinguish the behavior of Chinese people from our own. Very often the head of the delegation, which came to China, is treated with a specific food, such as fish eye or the head of a lamb given for dinner. This may be confusing, but this is the evidence of the hospitality. Sticks to eat should not be addressed directly to another person, because it is a symbol of death. Also, do not stick them upright in food.
These behaviors like munching and belching seems to us unacceptable, however in that culture is a sign that the food tastes good. When we are fed and do not want the waiter to deliver us another portion you Just need to tap on the tabletop fingers of our right hand. Knowledge of business ethics in China is very important, but one should not settle for everything, because the Chinese often us our humility towards their culture also against us. The key is to find the right balance. Certainly there are people who can be upset and wonder why we have to know and abide by their rules, not vice versa.
They may have a point, and often it happens that the Chinese side is interested, open and wants to know the ethics adopted in our culture. The fact that we try to adapt to their rules do not put us all in a subordinate position in relation to the Chinese partner. Close, almost family friendly relations with Chinese potential customers, knowledge of the rules, ethics, culture and patience may be the guarantor of successful relationships and achieving success. It is worth trying and it is interesting to get to know the country and its people, and it also worth to find a way that they could get to know us.