The Leadership and Initiative

Category: Culture
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China is a country with one of the most diverse, and oldest cultures in the world. The rich culture is what makes the country unique. With the country constantly evolving, China has been a great attraction to businesses and Entrepreneurs. However, there are many cultural differences that businesses and foreign investors must know before deciding to do business in China. Cultural differences is the biggest barrier that businesses must face in China. Before setting up a business in China, there are a couple of factors that should be considered.

This will ensure that businesses have a clear understanding of the long history and culture of the country. In China, success is celebrated as a “whole”. Any success is regarded as a success for the company, family, or team. The country focuses on celebrating success as a group, rather than for an individual. This type of culture in China is called “Collectivism.” The collectivist oriented culture in China results in tighter teamwork, more consensual decision making, more obedience and spread information sharing. Another culture difference in China is their Power distance in comparison to the United States. This means that people in the country accept the inequalities amongst people in a business setting. Individuals are influenced by formal authority and sanctions.

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They are in general, optimistic about people’s capacity for leadership and initiative. China can be considered as a high context culture since they have different mannerisms they use in a day to day base and in business settings. Communication is usually indirect and requires a deeper understanding of what a person may try to interpret. Compared to the United States, China is considered a restraint society. This means that they are quite used to refusing the temptations of immediate satisfaction, while holding firm to their beliefs that hard work, perseverance, and good planning will bring about a future overflowing with the fruits of their labor.

China’s oldest religion and still active religion is Taoism or others may know is also as Daoism. , The religion itself is about existing and living peacefully with Tao, Tao is essentially the reason for everything existing. For the people who do not practice Taoism they may practice Buddhism, Christianity or Islam. Buddhism was introduced by monks over 2,000 years ago. Buddhism has been able to coincide with Taoism since the very beginning. There is also Confucianism, altho is not considered a religion, Confucianism is an extremely popular way to live in China. Confucianism is a philosophy and it teaches the ethics and values Confucius, who died in 479 BC, believed were essential for humans to connect with one another. In China family is extremely important, this is where Confucius philosophy is mostly shown. Confucius dictates about duty, loyalty honor, sincerity and filial piety.

The philosophy can be seen in every aspect of the chinese lifestyle, at the home or at the workplace. At home, the older family members are highly respected, then the father would be next to lead the family. The women of China tend to take care of the home and child. They are not expected to have upper level jobs such as CEO, CFO, they may work in medicine, pharmacies, schools, and science. The government of China had a one child policy till late 2013, since then China has relax the law to two children if at least one parent was an only child versus both parents. This law made having a girl a disgrace since the boys in the family are supposed to take care of the parents when they become elders. Unlike in the United States, there is no cap on having children, both boys and girls are both welcome.

In the United States women have taken executive roles and when doing business with China it could be problematic since women do not often hold positions of such high rank. Usually in China when doing negotiations the senior member will speak for the company, versus in the United States a senior member may be there to supervise the negotiation but not to actual negotiate. The Chinese tend to take negotiations slow and they want to make sure that they can have a relationship with whomever they are doing business with. Showing respects is one of the most critical aspects of doing business with China. A low rank employee could not question a senior member, and if they did that shows that they do not respect them. This all falls back to the philosophy of Confucius, how the elders are shown respect. 

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The Leadership And Initiative. (2022, Apr 09). Retrieved from