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An Insider’s View Of Building Business In China

Australia’s business relationship with China is back in the headlines.

However, companies are having trouble taping into the Chinese market.
Dr Mona Chung [ born in Beijing where she took her undergraduate degree in international trade. She now lectures in International Business at Deakin University as well as sitting on the executive board of the Victoria branch of the Australia China Business Council] says the general relationship between our countries is very strong; and she would know.

#The biggest obstacle we face to a healthy business relationship is a lack of understanding about each other and 

#Australian businesses tend to ignore the cultural differences, which can cause problems for us. Many of the businesses that go to China don’t understand the cultural differences or the way the Chinese do business, and so they don’t succeed and a lot of resources are wasted.

#The Chinese won’t do business unless they’ve established a relationship [“guanxi”] with you. It’s extremely serious in China. They have to think of you as family, and that can take two years at minimum

#Building a business relationship is different in China than it is in Australia. There’s lots of eating and drinking.

#Going to China and eating with the Chinese is an important part of relationship building. The history of [eating and trading] goes back two or three thousand years,” Chung says.

The major difference between Australian and Chinese businesspeople is their alternative models of thinking.

The Western thinking model, or the “linear model” looks at one particular point or goal and charts the course to get there step by step.

Chinese thinking is the “star model“, dealing with four or five things at one time.

A couple of simple things that executives can do to prepare themselves for doing business with China

#Getting to know the people you’re going to meet is vital to a successful business relationship.

#Knowing people’s background and connections is when you find out about their capacities.

Most companies don’t do enough homework.

Before they jump on the plane, they need to study the markets and the people they’ll be dealing with and this sentiment is also applicable to other Western nations


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