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The importance of understanding your Chinese partners

It appears to be making news lately that American companies doing business in China are finding themselves in hot water for not understanding its culture. For example, a number of companies faced criticism for posting maps that left Taiwan and Tibet out of Chinese territory.

This is more than an issue concerning crackdowns upon these businesses by Chinese officials. Chinese consumers likewise may turn away from doing business with such companies.

The ability to communicate with your Chinese partners

Chinese professionals still often prefer face-to-face communication for resolving business issues. This is especially true if the problem is significant. It may mean meeting more than once to resolve the circumstances.

While methods of communication using tools such as email or social media may be effective when dealing with European nations, it may not prove effective doing business in China. It isn’t that Chinese people stay away from using social media. But the applications they use may be different.

It is generally necessary to confirm appointment times with Chinese partners in advance. It is also important to understand the role that linguistics can play. Sometimes it is necessary to obtain your own interpreter.

Without respecting its laws and culture, doing business in China will be impossible. With the expense one puts into a joint venture with a Chinese company, no one wants to lose that investment because they did not take the time to understand the obstacles they may face.

There is no substitute for seeking the services of attorneys and legal staff who understand Chinese laws and customs. Having advice concerning creation and formation of a business, business financing, the general licensing arrangements, and marketing will prove invaluable to the success of your business venture.

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