Conducting Business Negotiation in China – How to Be Fully Prepared

Sufficient preparation should be conducted if you want to carry out business in China. It is impossible to get a missing contract or document with such a long distance from home if you have forgotten to take along with you. Of course, you can find other alternatives such as asking your staff or colleagues to send the missing documents by email; however, it would probably lead to the failure of negotiation since it might leave a bad impression to your Chinese counterparts.

As a result, it is better to make out a detailed plan about what subjects to be discussed with each of the companies you are going to visit. Then, make a checklist of the necessary documents for each meeting and prepare them before hand. Everything should be ready on hand rather than guessing about what else needed if u want better results for the negotiation. A notebook is highly recommended to be taken along with during the negotiations to store all the necessary information.

Paper Documents

During the business negotiations with Chinese counterparts, it is better also prepare a paper version of the documents for the attendants. Sometimes it is inconvenient when several people attend the meeting and the meeting room does not offer presentation facilities or you are having a business negotiation in the restaurant. Hardcopies of important documents should be prepared to avoid anything going wrong. There needn’t be too many hardcopies if you are not sure how many people will attend. Usually most places would offer copying services, and it is easy to find one nearby.

Prepare for the Chinese Counterparts

Usually the business negotiation might last merely 2-3 hours, but if you want to make sure everything proceeds well, a thorough preparation will be needed.

Sometimes the Chinese business partners might request an advance summary of discussion points in the meeting so that they can prepare for it. If there is something unclear, it is better to ask them for additional information.

Chinese attach great importance to mianzi during negotiations, and they don’t like to be confronted with details they are not aware of or being challenged as it would make them lose face. Respect mianzi of the Chinese decision maker, and try to cover the Chinese side of the equation in preparing necessary documents. Helping the Chinese prepare for the business negotiation is without doubt a win-win approach to get the best results in the business negotiation.

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