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I’ve been receiving lot’s of feedback from readers who got into reading my book “Business Republic of China”. (BRC)

Some have been pressing me to go for a blog….. So here it is.

Since my partner & I set up a law firm & Consulting company in 1995, we’ve seen many tears of desperation from our customers.  Those tears could often be avoided if a bit of homework would be the start of the China business adventure. Unfortunately history repeats itself: Western Companies jumping onto the China wagon eager to either sell to a billion customers or profit from the ‘low’ production costs China can present.

Or in case of a Chinese bold entrepreneurs…..

Chinese companies trying to get favors from government officials in overseas markets or firing the representatives of a local union without much of an afterthought.

Many cases reach our desk & can be interesting case studies of what should or should better not be done to get you a healthy return on investment. For the sake of keeping everybody happy, names, locations, industries will have changed.

  I’ll try to keep it as entertaining as my book BRC.

Doing business in China is often perceived as a complex puzzle with opaque rules of play that are much fun to read, talk or ….write about. In reality the brainteaser is not that hard to crack. Since the doors were timidly opened several decades ago, China has matured, the jigsaw pieces have become much less and way easier to put together.

From a western perspective certain steps along the way are indeed done differently in this part of the world. I learned this the hard way and had to grapple with the fact that cultural sensitivity is the main key to raise the “shroud of mystery”. Getting rid of our own cultural ethnocentrism however is easier said than done. Cross-cultural misperceptions remain the chief catalyst for endangering a business success, starting the blame-game, preventing a healthy return on investment or faltering into new markets. The business basics are identical in China as anywhere else in the world. It’s more often than not how the cultural coating permeating the local business environment is digested by investors and managers alike that will define success. The same is valid for a Chinese businessman who wants to invest in Spain, Japan or Nigeria.

Soaking up another business culture can’t be acquired by only sitting on the sideline reading books or attending crash courses. It’s in the field that you’ll be able to really grasp, adjust and adapt. Having said that don’t try to be more Chinese than the Chinese and always keep in mind that your Chinese counterparts have home advantage.

With common sense, a good product, a bit of luck, an open mind and a level head anyone can succeed in China.

All the best with your Chinese endeavors & enjoy the ride!