The Blog for Culture Vultures

Satiate your inner Culture Vulture with regular news and posts about cultural awareness, doing business abroad, working in a multicultural environment, HR diversity and global mobility.

Practical Tips on Business Meetings in Chinese Culture

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Doing business in China? Then you'll be attending lots of meetings!

If you’re attending meetings in China, then it’s important to understand a little about Chinese culture and how meetings are run.

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How Do Chinese Names Work?

chinese-writing

Wherever you travel in the world, getting someone’s name wrong can be the difference between making a good impression or a bad impression.

If you’re travelling to China on business, it’s important that you take the time to understand the naming structures.

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How Easy is it to do Business with China?

bcci-scores-china

If you want to know how easy it is to do business with China, then look no further than the Business Culture Complexity Index ™ (BCCI), a tool which provides some great insights for expanding businesses.

The BCCI uses a number of data comparisons to produce a single ‘ease of doing business’ score for the world’s largest 50 economies, culturally speaking that is.

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Chinese Firms Face Tough Cultural Challenges in US Marketplace

US-China-Business-Culture-Clash

We hear a lot in the news about cultural differences with Western companies going East, but rarely about Eastern companies coming to the West.

A great little article in the South China Morning Post by Mark Magnier suggests that when it comes to navigating different business cultures, Chinese companies are finding very similar challenges when working on the global stage, especially in the USA.

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What’s the Best Thing About Being an Expat in China?

What’s the Best Thing About Being an Expat in China?

With so many cultural differences between China and the West, the decision to relocate to China as an expat can be a difficult one.

Although expats do indeed have some complex cultural differences to navigate however, there are a huge number of positives for people taking the move.

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Homosexuality in Traditional Asian Culture

Homosexuality in Traditional Asian Culture

With Taiwan the first country in Asia to legalise same sex marriage, you’d be forgiven for thinking that the acceptance of homosexuality was new to Asian culture.

However, homosexuality was generally an accepted part of the culture in many Asian countries until the West introduced its puritanical Christian religious ideology and played an influential role in bringing an end to the long-standing traditions in this part of the world.

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5 Chinese Dining Etiquette Tips You Really Need to Know

5 Chinese Dining Etiquette Tips You Really Need to Know

Doing business with the Chinese? If so, then it’s more than likely that food will be involved at some point!

Food, dining out and business banquets are all integral to relationship building and getting business done.

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New Online Training Course on Doing Business in China

New Online Training Course on Doing Business in China

We are delighted to announce the release of our latest online cultural awareness training course - on China.

The new addition to our catalogue of online courses offers lots of fantastic insights into Chinese culture, the people and of course, Chinese business practices.

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Cultural Differences and the Acquisition of Japanese Companies

Cultural Differences and the Acquisition of Japanese Companies

The global nature of commerce means today's businesses are always looking for opportunities outside of their domestic markets.

Acquiring, or merging with, a foreign company is common way to achieve this.

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Guanxi: The Chinese Cultural Concept

Guanxi: The Chinese Cultural Concept

"Guanxi" (pronounced (jwan-see) is one of the most powerful forces in Chinese culture.

Though the direct translation of "guanxi" is "relationships", the concept as it is used and applied in Chinese culture is much richer and encompassing.

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Women in Export and Doing Business in the Far East

Women in Export and Doing Business in the Far East

As part of the 2014 Export Week, Commisceo trainer Joyce Jenkins was invited to speak at UK Trade and Investment’s (UKTI) Women in Export event.

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Culture and its relation to Per Capita Income

Culture and its relation to Per Capita Income
Do you question how important culture is to our daily lives? Well many do. In reality however culture is at play moulding the world around us every minute of every day; sometimes in ways we don't understand. New research by Romain Wacziarg suggests country’s income per capita is actually closely related to the its culture.
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Chinese Etiquette School based on British Manners

Chinese Etiquette School based on British Manners

After decades of spitting, burping and littering, China seems to be ready for an Etiquette Revolution! And how are they overthrowing these bad manners? With a touch of good ole fashioned British courtesies.

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Boston companies use Cultural Awareness to lure Chinese Tourists

Boston companies use Cultural Awareness to lure Chinese Tourists

As many Chinese tourists only pay a brief visit to the city, local Boston companies are now getting training to increase their appeal to this important group of visitors (and revenue stream).

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German and Afghan military go all out on Cultural Sensitivity

German and Afghan military go all out on Cultural Sensitivity
News round-up! See why German soldiers are receiving cultural sensitivity training and how Amazon conquered China. All news hot off the press!

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Expat Tips - Moving to China

Expat Tips - Moving to China



When people decide that they want to move country with their work it can sometimes be a challenging time (especially if they are taking their family with them).

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American Graduates Finding Jobs in China

American Graduates Finding Jobs in China
Shanghai and Beijing are becoming new lands of opportunity for recent American college graduates who face unemployment nearing double digits at home.

Joshua Arjuna Stephens, a 2007 graduate of Wesleyan University, works in Beijing for XPD Media, which makes online games.

Even those with limited or no knowledge of Chinese are heeding the call. They are lured by China’s surging economy, the lower cost of living and a chance to bypass some of the dues-paying that is common to first jobs in the United States.

“I’ve seen a surge of young people coming to work in China over the last few years,” said Jack Perkowski, founder of Asimco Technologies, one of the largest automotive parts companies in China.

“When I came over to China in 1994, that was the first wave of Americans coming to China,” he said. “These young people are part of this big second wave.”

Read more > China
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China is top expat destination

China is top expat destination



China is the top expat destination followed by the U.S., UK, Singapore and Switzerland, survey reveals.

China is ranked as the top destination for international assignees in the annual Global Relocation Trends report from from Brookfield Global Relocation Services. In second place was the United States followed by the UK, Singapore and Switzerland.

China was also ranked as the top emerging destination followed by India and Russia.

China presents greatest challenges
Paradoxically, China was seen as presenting the greatest challenges to both international assignment managers and assignees due to the difficulty in finding suitable homes and schools, accessing medical care, immigration formalities, tax compliance, communication and knowledge of international regulations, the remoteness of the destinations and increasing costs. India ranked second and Russia third in terms of presenting the greatest relocation challenges.
The survey of 180 multinational firms reveals a significant move by companies to control costs with the number one relocation challenge being the overall cost of assignments, followed by finding suitable candidates and controlling policy exceptions.

Read more > China
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Hiring intentions slowing

 Some of the strongest hiring intentions recorded are in Singapore, India, Peru and Romania, while China reported the weakest hiring outlook according to Manpower’s latest Employment Outlook Survey.

Thirty-two countries and territories expect positive hiring activity for the second quarter.  However, as the majority of the predictions are weaker compared to the previous quarter, the general trend indicates a step back in hiring for many of the world’s largest economies, according to the latest Manpower Employment Outlook Survey.

Some of the strongest hiring intentions recorded are in Singapore, India, Peru and Romania.  These results reflect a high demand for talent in markets where foreign direct investment and labour mitigation are increasing.  China reported the weakest hiring outlook.

Read more > Expatica 
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Expat Life in Malaysia

Christopher Boyd says sitting in your 50th floor office, mobile phone in hand, reading about the problems of tigers eating the local livestock is but one of the many contrasts which makes life in Malaysia a long journey of discovery.



I am a long-term expat in Malaysia, having been here since 1974. My nationality is British, but I have permanent residence in Malaysia. By profession I am a Chartered Surveyor and a partner in Regroup, which is a firm of property valuers and agents. My wife is Malaysian and runs a nursery school.

Malaysia: Malaysia for the expatriate was once regarded as the "poor cousin" ranking well below Hong Kong and Singapore in importance and amenities. Increasingly it is the regional location of choice for foreign companies. Expats seldom have much problem settling in, and many plan to return here in retirement.

It is useful to think of Malaysia as really being three countries - the very cosmopolitan Klang Valley surrounding the capital Kuala Lumpur has every facet of a big city with modern buildings, hotels, parks and traffic jams.

Never very far away is the exotic countryside with its mountain ranges, endless plantations, jungle and coral beaches. Then, across the South China Sea, are the states which make up East Malaysia.

Read more> C. Boyd 

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