Far Eastern markets such as China and India are becoming increasingly important for Western companies. But the Asian cultural area is a world of its own: Depending on the country, there are subtle differences when it comes to etiquette. Buyers can quickly catch their negotiating partner on the wrong foot. For the second part of our “International Business Etiquette” series, we therefore scoured the business etiquette of the Asian world: the business etiquette for India, China, the Japan business etiquette and a few more. In the following, we will give you a few exciting details in condensed form that will play into your hands at your next negotiation.
First of all, even the most comprehensive handbook on the manners and customs of a country (let alone a continent) cannot make precise predictions about the behavior of an individual. This is why the following applies in general to everything you do: Remain polite and keep an eye on your surroundings. But above all: be patient.
"Establish friendship and business will follow": This is the unwritten law in Asia, where business relationships are primarily personal relationships. That is why Asians want to get to know their negotiating partners before the actual negotiations. As a rule, there is therefore a meal or other leisure activity.
Traditionally, every business in Asia is haggled over . Fixed prices like in Germany are the exception. This is why Asians usually assume that every price offer is negotiable. If you are negotiating with an Asian supplier , you should by no means accept a set price, otherwise your counterpart may feel trodden on. Accordingly, set your prices a little higher if you offer your own goods or services.
In Asia, negotiations are usually wise and long before a final decision is made. The discussions can be extremely protracted without bringing any concrete results. Alleged disinterest? Not at all: An essential part of Asian negotiating tactics is to wait and see in order to find gaps in the negotiating partner's strategy. Patience pays off: Often, a deal is only concluded shortly before the trip home.
The customer is always king in Asia. It is not common there for a customer to pay for service or customer support. You should take this fact into account when calculating the price . If defects occur after the transaction is concluded, it is expected that these will be eliminated as quickly as possible and at no additional cost.
A negotiating partner in Asia is primarily interested in the benefits of a product or service. Only when he has recognized this benefit is he interested in the quality. So when a Western buyer presents his interests, the Asian negotiating partner should also see a real advantage for his company in this.
The dress code in Asia varies from country to country. People in China are rather conservative. You'll never go wrong with a dark suit and tie. For women, a lot of make-up, short-sleeved blouses and high heels are taboo. Restraint is the order of the day. Pay attention to high quality and good workmanship of your clothes. If you dress in high quality for a meeting, it means that you respect your host.
Clothing is a status symbol, especially in Japan. So it shouldn't look cheap. The Japan business etiquette also points out: Short skirts can be embarrassing when women have to sit on the floor, as is customary in the country. In Malaysia and Thailand, yellow clothing should be treated with caution. Yellow is traditionally the color of the royal family there. There is also a political group in Thailand that wears yellow at demonstrations. A yellow piece of clothing can therefore quickly become an involuntary political commitment.
You can never go wrong with gifts in Asia! German and European brands are particularly popular in China and Hong Kong. According to the business etiquette of China, however, you should make sure that the present is not too expensive in order not to embarrass the recipient. The wrapping paper is ideally the color red or gold, because they bring luck. On the other hand, you prefer to refrain from flowers: They are only given away at funerals.
While there are often flat hierarchies in Germany and decisions are made in teams, things are very different in India and China. For example, you should never come to a negotiation with an intern in China. Otherwise you will insult your Chinese business partner and their status. Assistants are tolerated as long as they do not contribute their own ideas. Strict hierarchies apply particularly in India and China. According to business etiquette, the most experienced person is always in charge in India. In China, decision-makers often only intervene after their team has ensured that the business is worthwhile.
As a electric toothbrush manufacturer, factory and supplier in China, Shenzhen Relish provides various types of electric toothbrush wholesale, dropshipping, and OEM services. At the same time, we are also a water flosser manufacturer, providing wholesale, direct sales and OEM/ODM services for water flosser. We look forward to working with you.