Opinion

Shopping for Items at Chinese Online Marketplaces: Is It Safe?

Guest article by Courtney Gordner   It’s hard to keep your eyes from getting as big as saucers when you first get a glimpse of the discount prices on some consumer items in China, which range from tablets, to jewelry, to the latest fashions. Many of these can also be found on Chinese shopping sites...

The Crisis of Confidence in the Chinese Food Industry Benefits Recognizable Foreign Brands

Guest article by Matthew J. Van Den Hooven and Ji Ran   The baby milk (melamine) scandal happened in 2008 in China and took four infants lives. It injured over fifty thousand more infants who may continue to suffer the effects of this poison milk for the rest of their lives. A series of actions...
Wheels Within Wheels: Navigating Complex Motivations in Chinese Business

Wheels Within Wheels: Navigating Complex Motivations in Chinese Business

By Ward Chartier The purpose of this true story is to describe how nothing is what it seems to be in many situations in China.  The story is also a caution about the need to be constantly aware of thinking and actions occurring on several levels simultaneously. Confucian principles are an indelible part of the...

What Happens When Your Chinese Employees “Lose Face”?

Guest post by Courtney Gordner No one likes to be embarrassed. We empathize with the feeling of embarrassment greatly, causing second-hand embarrassment to flourish in American society. Individuals will extend the emotion towards others, even when we ourselves are in no danger of suffering humiliation. There are certain actions you make have taken to help...

Marketing Products to Chinese Consumers

Guest post by Courtney Gordner Households around the world have certain basic needs in common. They need food, shelter and a sense of security. They often enjoy common bonds with those closest to them who share that household. However, there are also certain differences that arise based on culture and experiences. This is why when...
A Warm Winter's Tuesday in Shanghai

A Warm Winter’s Tuesday in Shanghai

A memorable interaction with a Chinese employee leaves an American factory manager in Shanghai touched by an extraordinary example of kindness and generosity. Winter in Shanghai; photo from blog That Look Crayzy!   By Ward Chartier The starting time at my factory in Shanghai is 9 am.  The buses carrying employees arrive shortly before then, and...
China Meets Texas: What to Do When Cultural Differences Collide?

China Meets Texas: What to Do When Cultural Differences Collide?

By Ward Chartier Though I lived and worked in Texas for 16 years, I wasn’t born there.  While in Texas I learned quite a bit about Texas culture, and even learned to distinguish the East Texas accent from the West Texas accent.  What struck me most about Texas culture is the rugged individualism and self-reliance...
Cutting Corners: The Quality Game in China

Cutting Corners: The Quality Game in China

By Ward Chartier After working in high-tech factories in China for seven years, I’ve come to appreciate the many differences working there compared to previous assignments in southeast Asia and Europe.  On the positive side, there is a strong work ethic among Chinese employees.  Daily attendance is often 99% or greater.  It is usually possible...
Hacking, Espionage, and IP Theft: A Perfect Storm for Technology MNCs in China?

Hacking, Espionage, and IP Theft: A Perfect Storm for Technology MNCs in China?

Where have the chips fallen in the wake of Edward Snowden's revelations about American cyber-espionage?
Custom Motor Design & China Outsourcing: Understanding & Avoiding Risks

Custom Motor Design & China Outsourcing: Understanding & Avoiding Risks

In an LCB-featured guest article, the president of Portland, Oregon-based Sinotech offers his insight into how to control risks and succeed when sourcing customized components from Chinese suppliers. By Michael Bloom China is a valuable partner for Western businesses, but many don’t understand the nuances of outsourcing. I’ve worked with Chinese companies via my custom motor...
The case for learning Chinese characters -- on your smartphone or tablet!

The case for learning Chinese characters — on your smartphone or tablet!

Innovative new apps can help break the cycle of expat illiteracy in China By Aaron Posehn Most people think that learning Chinese is hard, and they’ll probably also tell you that learning to write Chinese characters is even harder. But whether or not this is true, as an expatriate in China, Taiwan, or Hong Kong...
Closing Deals in China: A Study in Relativity

Closing Deals in China: A Study in Relativity

By Justin Shuttleworth “Time eases all things.” –Sophocles I spent four years as a sales manager in mainland China, doing business in some of the largest cities including Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, and Shenzhen. Those four years seemed to sail by very quickly. My company’s primary product was a world-class air purifier and business was good,...