- The analysis aims to decipher the mystery of Eastern business culture.
- Vital Guidelines for Westerners in Doing Business in Asia.
About the author
Chin-ning Chu was born in Tianjin (China), grew up in Taiwan, now lives in Beaverton, Oregon (USA).
She is the president of Asia Marketing Company. She advises Western companies planning to do business in Asia.
Part 1 – Mind Battle
Prepare for battle
The story of David Buyer, a Canadian businessman who comes to China for the first time.
In the summer of 1988, Buyer agreed to sell 3200 ferrets to China with the promise of technical assistance to develop a scientific program for mink breeding and breeding. In this business he expected a profit of one million dollars.
Buyer anxiously waited for the Chinese delegation to pass the test but did not see it, because he did not want the ferrets to be late for breeding season, he reported to China that he would fly the mink by plane, the Chinese side did not object. Coming to China, the mink were hungry, the Chinese side did not create conditions to take care of them; 150 children died. China pressured, renegotiated the contract. In the face of an irreversible situation, Mr. Buyer had to accept to sell at a very low price, in order to be sold at such a low price, Mr. Buyer had to promise to sponsor dozens of children of Chinese officials to study in Canada. Buyer ended up losing nearly half a million dollars.
The above case shows the way of thinking of the East and the West who have not met, the exchange of opinions is not a contract.
Strategic thinking is deeply rooted in the Eastern mind. Westerners who fail to detect the complex strategic cobwebs of their Asian counterparts can fall victim to them.
The marketplace is like a battlefield
For Westerners, the lessons of history are rarely applied to everyday life. In contrast, Easterners study history so that they can understand principles that apply to all situations in life. Therefore, to understand the business philosophy of Asians, it is necessary to study their history.
Asians understand the true nature of economic competition, so there is a saying: "Market is like a battlefield". They look for the principles of military tactics and tactics of the ancients to apply in everyday life, including business.
Hundreds of martial arts books have been formed since BC. Most have been lost. The most complete and influential book of Eastern people is Sun Tzu Binh Phap. People unconsciously absorb strategic thinking and learn to compete as a natural aspect of human interaction.
The martial law of the dead
Sun Tzu believes that one must understand the importance of military tactics for the survival of the nation. War is a matter of life and death, no battle is waged until strategy is carefully considered.
In the future, the military war may be replaced by the international economic war.
According to Sun Tzu, when planning a strategy, it is necessary to consider five factors: justice, opportunity, terrain, leadership, organization and discipline.
There is a reason to create the necessary unity of purpose between leadership and management. Taking the opportunity is about understanding the periodicity of things that helps you to harmonize your actions with them. Location affects life and death matters, a location has advantages and disadvantages. Leadership, whether in the military or in business, requires qualities such as wisdom, trustworthiness, honesty, generosity, courage, and rigor. The assignment, organization and assignment of tasks must be specific and clear. The follower must obey the discipline and try his best to complete the task.
The Chinese military books all say that the core of the military lies in deception, victory must be achieved by all means and the deception of the enemy plays an important role in the strategy. Westerners are naive and vulnerable to the East's deceitful tactics. British and Americans often value the tradition of openness and integrity. When applied in a transaction, the word deceive gives the impression of an immoral or illegal act. This is not to say that Easterners are without honor, but that the moral difference is cultural.
The tricks in tactics such as: If we are strong, we pretend to be weak. When you're ready to attack, act like you don't intend to attack. When we are near, we must act as if we are far away, but when we are far away we must act as if we are near. Should lure the enemy with small victories. If the enemy is well-prepared, strong, well-trained, and solid in every way, avoid direct confrontation. Create a chance to win by angering your enemies and causing them to take unwise actions. Make your enemies arrogant by appearing weak. When the enemy is stationary, do not let them rest. Destroy all enemy alliances to isolate them. Victory is decided before the battle begins. Five factors determine victory: knowing when to hit and when not to; won the complete support of the soldiers; well prepared to be able to seize the opportunity;unaffected by people above; arrive at the right time; act quickly and decisively. The most precious victory is won by strategy, the chance to win is brought by the enemy. Combine basic elements to form unique plans. Use a local guide. Keep your plan as dark and impenetrable as a shadow; proceed like lightning. Attack when the opponent is least defensive and least suspicious. When the enemy talks of peace, there is a conspiracy. In the face of death, the struggle for survival is reborn. Spying is a necessity.Keep your plan as dark and impenetrable as a shadow; proceed like lightning. Attack when the opponent is least defensive and least suspicious. When the enemy talks of peace, there is a conspiracy. In the face of death, the struggle for survival is reborn. Spying is a necessity.Keep your plan as dark and impenetrable as a shadow; proceed like lightning. Attack when the opponent is least defensive and least suspicious. When the enemy talks of peace, there is a conspiracy. In the face of death, the struggle for survival is reborn. Spying is a necessity.
The Three Hexagrams is a collection of ancient Chinese tactics for dealing with all kinds of situations. It describes methods of using concrete manifestations of the duality of the universe to the benefit of man. The Chinese believe that learning these tricks is not because they want to deceive others, but because they want to recognize them and avoid falling into them.
Step 1: Lie to the sky and cross the sea
Sometimes it is necessary to expose the fake and keep the real hidden. The opponent will focus on the fake situation, so that the real goal can be accomplished easily.
Second plan: Then Wei saves Zhao
The state of Zhao was besieged by the Wei state. Millions of people asked for help in the country of Qi. Sun Bin came up with a plan: without directly attacking the Wei army, just sent a siege army to attack Wei, the Wei army immediately withdrew from Zhao, fell into Sun Bin's ambush and was annihilated.
Step 3: Borrowing a knife to kill someone
Kill the enemy without smearing your hands with blood. Just deepen the inherent animosity between the enemy and the third party.
Step 4: Get leisurely and hard work
When we are at a disadvantage, we should not engage in combat with the enemy. Take a break, wait for the opportunity. Procrastination weakens the enemy. We move from weakness to strength.
Step 5: Fallen hedges
Victory can be obtained by taking advantage of the opponent's bad luck.
The sixth strategy: Stretching east and west
Conceal where you intend to attack by pretending to be about to attack somewhere else.
Step 6: Turn no into yes
Make the unreal seem real.
Step 7: Turn no into yes
Make the unreal seem real.
Step 8: Sneaking through Tran Thuong
Liu Bang withdrew his troops to Ba Thuc, then destroyed the only road to Ba Thuc. Later, when Luu Bang prepared to attack Xiangwu, he rebuilt the road. Xiang Wu thought that the road to Luu Bang might have been repaired before he could move forward. Unexpectedly, Luu Bang sneaked past Tran Thuong, few people appeared, and suddenly beat and smashed Xiang Vo.
Lesson 9: How the river sees the fire
When there are conflicts within the enemy, it is best to stand and watch from the other side of the river to let the flames of conflict burn. It is important to know when to watch a fire and when to proactively intervene.
10th plan: The mouth of the sword
Do everything you can to gain the trust of your opponent and thus let your guard down, and then suddenly attack.
Option 11: Get plums instead of peaches
Give away what is not important to gain what is important.
Step 12: Hand in hand to lead the goat
If you see a goat on the side of the road, no one is watching, bring it home. Let's quickly turn the opponent's carelessness to our advantage.
13th plan: Attack with snake maneuver
When you know the snake in the grass, avoid moving the grass, because you have an unexpected advantage. When ready to confront, we should move the grass so that snakes appear and destroy.
Plan 14: Borrowing the body to restore the soul
The lawyer surnamed Ly escaped to heaven, he promised his students to keep the body, seven days later he would return to his soul. The student who kept the body suspected that his mother was seriously ill and was about to die, so he had to burn the body to return home to meet his mother. Seven days later, Ly returned to find his body, but a beggar who had just died on the side of the road entered his soul into it, so the beggar came back to life.
A company on the verge of bankruptcy, a foreign company lacking information on a joint venture with that company, breathes new life into it.
The 15th move: The tiger li mountain dance
Let's lure the tiger away from the mountain, away from the natural environment, the strength of the tiger will decrease.
16th plan: Want to catch and pretend to forgive
Capturing the enemy, pretending to be humane and releasing, a few times like that, can subdue the enemy.
Plan 17: Toss tiles to get jade
To exchange tile samples for gems, you must have convincing skills and the bait must be attractive enough.
Option 18: Beating snakes to the head
Capturing the enemy leader is your chance to win.
Lesson 19: Pull out the firewood from the bottom of the pot
If the boiling water is strong and dangerous, do not confront. Pull out the firewood from the bottom of the pot, the water stops boiling, and the danger is eliminated.
Option 20: Guest turns into owner
The smart guest can take several chances to turn the edge in his favor.
Option 21: Cicadas molt
Cicadas molt and fly away, leaving an empty shell, people will mistake the notebook for a real cicada.
The 22nd: Digging the price of painting
Vu Tac Thien wants to take the throne, she befriends the queen. When Vu Tac Thien gave birth to a baby girl, the queen visited and left. Vu Tac Thien strangled his daughter to death, shouting for the queen to be jealous because she had no children. The king was angry and executed the queen, Vu Tac Thien took her place.
Step 23: Killing chickens to scare monkeys
A monkey refused to obey, the man taught the monkey to kill a chicken right in front of the monkey. Seeing the painful death of the chicken, the monkey became docile.
24th plan: Stealing dragons and cheating
Emperor Chanzong of the Song Dynasty. The queen had no children, and a concubine of the king gave birth to a son. The queen's position could be shaken, she kidnapped the infant and announced she had given birth to a prince and swapped the fox's body for her concubine, who was found guilty of being a fox and expelled from the palace. The queen becomes the mother of the future king.
25th strategy: Close range and close
Should form alliances with distant countries to fight adjoining enemies.
Act 26: Insinuations
Criticize a person who is absent but implies criticizing the person who is there. That is to say what needs to be said without causing confrontation.
The 27th move: Impersonating a pig to catch a tiger
The hunter pretended to be a pig to lure the tiger, the tiger approached and was killed.
Option 28: Cross the river and burn the bridge
Once you've crossed the river, if you don't need to turn back, break the bridge. Liu Bang, when reunifying China, killed those who helped him win and prevent disaster.
Option 29: Pretending to be naive
When facing great enemies, one should not act hastily, but pretend to be naive, pretend not to pose danger, not create danger, and wait for opportunities.
30th plan: Provocation plan
It is unwise to provoke others to anger them.
31st Succession: Beauty's Success
Sex is used as a weapon in espionage and in conspiracy.
32nd plan: Failed plan
Khong Minh's army went far away, the citadel was not well defended. Sima Yi suddenly attacked. Khong Minh ordered to open the city gate and drink wine. Sima Yi was on guard, afraid of being trapped, not entering the city and retreating.
Option 33: Using a spy
Espionage and counterintelligence are as important to the country as it is to business.
The 34th plan: The next humiliation
A spy prepares to infiltrate a neighboring country, he loses an eye to convince the neighboring country's king that he is being persecuted, wants to serve his new master, but is actually to fulfill his spy mission. me.
Chapter 35: Continuity Success
Depending on the situation, combine the above tricks like the links of a chain.
The 36th plan: The upper hand
If you can fight and the defender wins, fight. If you can't win, run away.
Thick face, black heart
Since the 1930s, Ly Ton Ngo has published a pamphlet titled "thick face, black heart", the content mentions the ruthlessness and fierceness of those who pursue their goals regardless of the consequences. cause to others. They are people who feel no shame or guilt. The only thing they're concerned about with their behavior is whether it's working. According to Mr. Ly, there are three levels of practice with thick face and black heart: "Thick as a wall, as black as coal" is the level of common crooks, frauds and unfaithful people. The second level is “Thick and hard, black and glittery” who are not bound by guilt, shame despite their behavior everyone knows. The third level is “Thick to invisible, black to formless” are those who pursue their sinful goals, but pretend to be virtuous, praised by the fangs.
The principle of thick face, black heart has been expressed since ancient times, but Ly was the only one to name it later. Out of a thirst for power. Throughout Chinese history, many figures embody this principle. Cao Cao is a very black person, he said: "I would rather help people, not people help me". Liu Bei is a very thick-faced man, when he lost the battle he knelt, cried, begged for his life, but when the revenge fell into his hands, he did not feel sorry, Xiang Yu was a talented warrior, his army he was strong, but in the end he lost the battle and committed suicide because his face was not thick, his heart was not as black as Liu Bang's.
Although thick-faced, black-hearted principles may never be talked about in Asian politics and business today, they are certainly the foundation of highly effective ways of acting.
Part 2 – Ant-Man
Japan said no for 300 years
Since 1623, the Tokugawa shogunate has given Japan more than two hundred years of peace and political stability. This dynasty that promoted the consolidation of Confucianism and Buddhism to support the authority of the centralized shogunate and as a means of opposing Christianity began to appear in Japan in the footsteps of Western missionaries and merchants. from the sixteenth century. The control of foreign trade is also tightened to prevent people from being influenced by foreign countries.
At the end of the 18th century, American, British and Russian ships wanted to have commercial agreements with Japan, but were refused. A Japanese scholar suggested opening Japan to foreign countries, he was imprisoned and then forced to commit suicide.
In 1854, the Japanese gave in to American demands in the face of an implicit threat of military retaliation. The Japanese deeply despise foreigners and feel anger and shame for not being able to shake off these strangers. Groups of samurai once stood up to fight foreign forces, an unequal battle.
In 1858, the bakufu regime collapsed, Emperor Meiji ascended the throne, he clearly saw the inferiority of ancient weapons to those of Western industrial countries. In 1868, he published an important document: "The Emperor's Five-Article Oath".
The content of the five articles represents a radical reform. All issues are publicly discussed to decide. From the Emperor to the people, from the central government to the locality, unanimously and unitedly; get rid of outdated customs; seek and acquire new knowledge around the world to strengthen. The Emperor's Five Articles have been the guideposts in shaping Japan's foreign and economic policies over the past hundred years.
The samurai turned to a new battlefield – commerce. A samurai is also a good businessman. Bringing Western intellectuals into Japanese thinking. Take Western technology, perfect it, manufacture it, then export it back to the countries where it originated. The desire to become a rich country has come true. The Japanese began to implement a policy of colonial expansion, gaining natural resources to support industry and leading to the second world war.
After the war, postwar Japan was a miracle, made up of tenacity, will and determination, they rose from ruined cities to become one of the greatest industrial powers in the world. gender.
Winning in economics and technology, the Japanese increasingly wanted to prove themselves in the field of defense.
Morality and hypocrisy
The Japanese personality, like all other peoples, is a mixture of good and bad.
The most remarkable characteristic of the Japanese is their ability to put the interests of the nation, the company, and the family above the interests of the individual. The Japanese love for their profession puts other Asian peoples to shame. Shinto places great importance on ritual cleansing, because it is believed that the cleanliness of the physical environment and the human body plays a central role in spiritual advancement. Therefore, cleanliness will be a virtue in public or private places, even though Japanese cities and towns are very crowded.
The Japanese have a hard time saying no outright. When they want to say no, they often express themselves by cursing.
The Japanese consider themselves a very noble people. The theory of superior race justifies their military and imperial ambitions.
The relationship amae - love and interdependence - permeates every relationship in Japanese society.
The amae represents loyalty, not skepticism, is a moral expression in the relationship between the Japanese and the Japanese. But the amae relationship was never reserved for Westerners.
Although Japan has a strong sense of national pride, it still mixes with the vague sense of inferiority of a people whose culture has borrowed heavily. According to Mishima, a Japanese writer, these mixed feelings stem from a desire to cover up feelings of inferiority and to have a false sense of self-esteem.
The excessive brutality of the Japanese during the second world war is known to the whole world. The brutality of the Japanese concentration camps was comparable to that of Nazi Germany. But unlike Germany, Japan barely faced its guilt during the war, with little repentance shown.
But every Japanese is deeply outraged by the Hiroshima and Nagasaki incidents and the humiliation of the postwar American occupation, which America has made victims of.
In Japan, if all else fails, one can always commit suicide. They consider honor much more important than the value of life.
Japanese society is a bit like an anthill. Each member has a separate position and mission to serve the herd. The ants are stronger than the swarming insects. Japanese society is more efficient than other societies in which the individual is unwilling to submit to the will of the collective. It is impossible not to admire the Japanese for their assertiveness, their ability to disregard personal gain for the greater good.
Samurai - samurai - developed into a professional military class. The samurai was a loyal warrior (bushi) and served his master as absolute duty, despised death, wordless, ready to fight at all times, equally skillful with his pen and sword. .
Today, although the old class of samurai is gone, there is a new class of samurai in Japan. They are the Samurai union, the workers, the directors, they show in every workplace the same attitude that their forefathers brought to the battlefield. The Japanese value free trade because they know that Western labor cannot be compared with Japanese samurai labor.
Morita and Ishihara
Morita is the CEO of Sony and Ishihara is a former Japanese transport minister and co-author of the best-selling book The Japan That Can Say No. The main theme of the book is about a Japan that, after decades of bullying, awakens and realizes that it is now stronger than the oppressor.
Ishihara was more cynical, he chose heavy, racist words. He put it into words, forty years of anger and hatred towards the conqueror, America. The past, he said, belonged to the white race; the future must belong to the yellow race, the Americans cannot be reversed.
Morita's comment was more moderate. He believes that the time has come for Japan to speak frankly with its Western partners. Japan has regained its dominant position in the international community. Part of his message was that dealing with America was conducted like a war. The goal is to defeat and dominate the enemy.
The healthy American manufacturing industry was destroyed by Japan's entry into the US market through both legal and illegal means.
Americans love to listen to their hearts. They are honest, this naivety often puts Americans in a vulnerable position in the US-Japan trade war.
Criticisms serve the goal that, when forced to break down trade barriers, Japan has created a psychological wall against all American imports in every Japanese consumer.
Part 3 – The Queen
To understand Asia, you must first understand China. Because of its long history, Chinese culture is the root of many other cultures in Asia.
Westerners believe that the first step in doing business with the Chinese is to make friends. The Chinese also believe that friendship is an effective tool when dealing with Westerners. But they pride themselves on their mastery of dealing with Westerners, using the phrase tean-zan to describe friendly and genuine Americans.
In China, the person holding the top position is not always the boss but the senior, the well-connected person is often behind the scenes, playing an important role in decision-making. The most important thing for Western entrepreneurs is to identify the "real boss".
Asians can hide behind cultural differences when it benefits them. But sometimes they emphasize, sometimes deny this difference to create advantages in negotiation. It is important for Western entrepreneurs to understand which situations are due to cultural differences and which situations are just tactics.
The West in China's Perspective
For most of its history, China has maintained a state of self-isolation, not out of fear of the outside world, but out of the notion that nothing good exists outside of China.
The 1842 Opium War proved that Asia's archaic weaponry was no match for Western military technology.
In the years that followed, China was torn apart by foreign powers. Then the Russo-Japanese war of 1904 took place not in Russia, not in Japan, but on Chinese soil, the Chinese people and their property were destroyed. From the beginning of the Opium War to the end of World War II, China was more a subject of foreign powers than a sovereign state. Several times during this period, the Chinese attempted to free themselves from this domination. The bitterness of this period can partly explain the attitude of the Chinese in today's political and economic negotiations with the West.
The Chinese find America's history simple, uncomplicated, short, and quite agreeable. Americans have not experienced hardship like the Chinese. So it doesn't matter that the Chinese may feel they have a right to take advantage of Westerners when given the opportunity. Western businessmen should wisely recognize the shadow of the past 150 years of mistreatment that the Chinese people have suffered.
Cultural and historical connections among the peoples of Asia
Asian culture does not have a clear division between religion and philosophy. In Asia, the teachings of the sages are often seen not as God-revealed words, but as instructions on how to live according to heaven.
The core of Lao Tzu's teaching is summed up in two words, "no-action". The principle of wu wu does not mean sitting around doing nothing, but acting according to nature, making every effort, and then entrusting the results to the Tao. Non-action is letting go of the fruit of action. The wrong understanding of the concept of wu wu has contributed to the decline and stagnation of China's society and industry.
The core of Zen is that each individual contains the seeds of holiness and the ability to realize his or her own divine nature. The goal of Zen practice is to realize that holy nature.
Confucius defined the principles and duties of the head as to rule with benevolence. People must obey and respect their leaders. The distortion of the teachings of Confucius caused political and social stagnation, the consequences of which are still felt throughout Asia today.
There have been no wars for religious reasons in the history of China, Japan, or Korea. Each Asian country edited and interpreted the teachings of Chinese philosophers in its own way.
The peoples of Asia have much in common, but through centuries of interaction and excitement over recent historical events, Koreans still have a bitter feeling toward the Japanese because of their obsession with being Japanese. dominate. The Chinese still have difficulty forgetting the actions of the Japanese in the past. That complicated relationship, a Westerner is not easy to grasp.
The Chinese have a difference between the people of the South and the people of the North of China. Northern people are simple, honest, hard-working, simple, humorous but short-tempered. Southerners are smarter, more cunning, good at trading and communicating. For Westerners, doing business with Northerners is easier than Southerners. The Chinese don't like going against the rules, they prefer to go around rather than face it.
What the Chinese say is often not what they really mean. When you see a humble person, do not rush to accept his refusal, you may bring yourself to resentment.
One contradiction in Chinese culture is that, while they act as if time is endless, on the other hand, individuals often behave selfishly, panicking in their daily lives.
In Chinese society, all the rules don't matter if there is a relationship. You break the law, if you have the right treatment and relationship, you can't go wrong. Extramarital sex is very common among Chinese men of wealth or high social status. They assume that something his wife doesn't know won't hurt her.
Contradictability is an ancient Chinese concept, presented by Mao as a guide to action: In power relations between people, there are also fundamentally opposing forces. To be able to control any situation by identifying opposing forces and then applying a force where it gives the greatest leverage to study the course of events in your favor.
Taiwan's economic boom
After being defeated by Mao Zedong's forces, Chiang Kai-shek's forces of the Republic of China (ROC) retreated to Taiwan. They see this as a temporary way, they plan to regroup, return to the Mainland, defeat the People's Republic of China (PRC).
In the years after 1949, the Taiwanese lived in constant threat of being invaded by the mainland. In 1979, the ROC was expelled from the United Nations, the political power of the ROC began to wane. The ROC leaders understood that they could not compete with the PRC in terms of influence, so the Taiwanese government adopted a policy of trying to focus on economic development, foreign trade, and accumulating foreign exchange reserves.
Taiwan opened the market, Japan pursued the Taiwan market aggressively, they strongly invested in infrastructure development: roads, railways, bridges, ports, schools, hospitals... Industry, agriculture Taiwan's industry developed rapidly thanks to farming techniques, science and technology learned from Japan. The modernized Japanese rely on a few giant corporations, the Taiwanese rely on tens of thousands of businesses, not only these forces believe in the dream, but everyone has the same belief.
The rapid economic development of Taiwan has its price, the environment is destroyed: the air, the outer rivers, the lakes and the surrounding sea, all are heavily polluted; Some people left behind become criminals, tax evasion and black and red games are almost universal.
There is a minority of Taiwanese who prefer to accept the fact that there are two Chinas and establish Taiwan as an independent country. The ROC leaders never forgot their original goal, which was to return to the mainland and establish China's reformist government. The reunification of China is a problem that does not appear to have any clear solution for now. But forty years is just a flash in the length of China's history. Dynasties have emerged, flourished and then dissolved into dust many times.
Part 4 – Survivors
North Korea is located between China and Japan, which is an important influence on Korean culture. Confucian values play an important role in Korean society, even though Buddhism has been the state religion for centuries. From the 16th century, Japan invaded Korea, then in the early 20th century, Japan ruled Korea for nearly half a century with extremely brutal policies. Most Koreans still hold a grudge against the Japanese to this day. The area in which North Korea is most similar to Japan is the management of modern commercial business.
Koreans are frank, open, and nervous. Their nature is peace-loving, but when they fight, they have fearsome courage. Koreans are different from Chinese, Japanese and other Asian peoples in their sentimentality. They are sometimes called Asian Irish, they get angry easily and also make peace easily.
The decision of Yalta at the 38th parallel divided Korea into two regions. In 1950, North Korea launched an invasion of the South, the United Nations intervened, after 3 years of fierce war, the ceasefire agreement and the 38th parallel remained the boundary between the two Koreas. In May 1961, Park Chung Hee had a coup d'etat in the South, taking power to start the economic construction.
Park Chung Hee's government is a military dictatorship that has interfered in the affairs of Korean business and industry. The private sector and the state have a close relationship, a centralized economy combined with free trade, exports supplement the weak domestic market, and seek to accumulate capital to continue the industrialization process. mine. The Korean economy also faces bureaucracy, corruption and political instability caused by the anti-American government in the North, which has urbanized so rapidly that it is worrying.
In the race to industrialization, Korea started 10 years after Taiwan, 15 years after Japan, but the miraculous development has turned Korea into one of the four dragons of Asia: Korea, Taiwan , Hong Kong and Singapore.
The cultures of Asia are influenced by the Confucian concept of "mistress" (Ren Qing). Sympathetic Give-Receive governs human-to-human relationships. Lovers' debts are remembered and cannot be unpaid. However, the art of creating a less expensive debt that an opponent can repay with a more valuable concession is something Westerners have to be subtle to realize.
Don't let your guard down by smiles and friendly gestures, respond in kind, but don't assume the situation is more well-intentioned than it actually is. Remember, in Asia, humility is not only a virtue but a weapon.
Enter the Asian market with a long-term goal, don't expect instant profits. It can take a considerable amount of time to develop the necessary relationships.
In doing business with the Japanese, loyalty is very important. In China, business loyalty is seen as commendable, but it is not traditional to place it above profit.
Remember, the Japanese don't want to hear about the Chinese roots of their culture; Koreans don't want to hear about the virtues of the Japanese. Patience is an absolute virtue when doing business with the Chinese, because for them, time is not money. When negotiating a project, a leadership approach is required. When implementing a project, it is necessary to approach subordinates. You must win the trust and cooperation of production staff, supervisors, and low-level management.
Paper tiger or sleeping lion?
America is in great economic trouble. U.S. high-tech industries cannot compete with Asian manufacturers in terms of price or quality.
In about two centuries, generations of Americans began to take comfort and luxury for granted. They begin to care about the fruit of prosperity and forget about the process of creating it.
The second world war, millions of Asians starving and exhausted, they started to earn money to survive, they rebuilt the country with modern technology. Meanwhile, Americans were dazzled by their success and believed themselves invincible. Before the Americans knew it, the influx of Asian goods had grown into a flood. And they realized they had borrowed to pay for what was considered normal. Borrowed too much, but Americans are far from willing to recognize the triumph of the emerging Asian economic powers.
Americans aren't stupid, but why are they so easily outdone in deals? The answer is because they are used to thinking in a world where there is enough for everyone. Wealth, honesty, fairness, and generosity are valued more than the skill of taking every advantage in every transaction. Asians know that “the marketplace is the battlefield”. For Americans, it's more like a football game.
Because they are so rich and powerful, Americans often don't feel the nation's very existence is threatened. Because of that, they are less cautious. However, once attacked they always respond like a sleeping lion. They awoke, surprised, briefly confused, and then angry. In the international market, Americans' biggest weakness is that they don't realize they're in the middle of a war. Because they have never been occupied, they do not understand the devastating consequences of being economically dominated by another country. As one U.S. military officer put it: “In peacetime the U.S. military appears completely unprepared to respond to an attack. However, once we recognize a threat, we always respond extremely effectively.” In today's world, they don't let themselves be surprised anymore.