One of the most visible changes to the human landscape of China over the past few decades has been the change in dress code.
Gone is the standard unisex Mao jacket and trousers in blue or green and these have been replaced by a much more western style of dress – especially in the commercial and urban areas. Many men now wear suits and ties and women tend to wear skirts and blouses of a modest cut. It is advisable to have smart business attire with you when visiting.
Appearance is important within Chinese business circles. Successful people are expected to look successful. Wealth is admired, so wear good quality clothes, watches etc. if you want to impress – but don’t be overly ostentatious.
Be aware of the vagaries of the Chinese climate, which veer from sub-tropical to freezing and dress appropriately for the weather conditions. Make sure you check the weather conditions before you travel and check the climatic zone of the city you are visiting – China is a big place.
Written and Produced by Keith Warburton
China seems to grow more confident by the day. Is it too strong a statement to say that China is starting to regain its historical position as the pre-eminent global economy? The Chinese government is steadfastly following a policy of internal economic consolidation and international engagement. Wherever you are in the world you can start to feel the impact of Chinese investment and influence. China can no longer be classified as an emerging market. China has emerged and is taking on the world – much as America did in the early twentieth century and Japan in the 1970’s.
How the traditionally pre-eminent global economies such as the USA, Germany and Japan react to the growing strength of China will be fascinating to watch over the coming decades but one thing is sure – China is a force to be reckoned with and cannot be ignored. If you are not currently doing business in (or with) China, you probably should be.
However, China is not easy – somebody once said ‘in China everything is possible – but nothing is easy.’ Before starting to do business in China it is essential that you try to get an understanding of the cultural drivers and expectations of your Chinese contacts. Do you really understand the importance of ‘face’ in China and do you feel confident you can navigate the complexities of Chinese corporate hierarchy? How are you going to develop those all-important relationships and what impact will Chinese long-termism potentially have on your cash-flow forecasts?
China is a land of opportunities but it is also a land of potential bear traps. Do your homework – don’t fail through lack of research and planning.
This country profile provides an overview of some of the key aspects of Chinese business culture in a concise, easy to follow-format. The document includes information on: