Your business trip is arranged, flight tickets booked, accommodation arranged and your schedule is full. Whether it’s your first visit to China, Hong Kong or Taiwan, or if you are a regular visitor to these areas, make sure you don’t forget some Chinese business cards.
A bit of background; whilst China is undoubtedly modernising with management and business methods converging with those of the West, there is still an element of conservatism that runs through everyday life, culture and work. The continued rigid use of business cards is an example of this. Business meetings will often begin with an exchange of cards, politely handed to each other with two hands before the card is studied digital namecard and then carefully placed in a holder.
You may wonder, do you need to be part of this, won’t your English cards suffice? Here we outline 5 reasons why you should definitely ensure some Chinese business cards are in your luggage when taking that all important business trip.
1. Avoid misunderstandings.
Make sure that those you meet fully understand what your business does and also your role within the business. If you are at or near the top of your business hierarchy then you need to make sure this is clear. Chinese like to think they are negotiating with those who have the ability to make decisions.
2. Show cultural understanding.
Name card culture is ingrained in Chinese culture. Show that you are aware of the importance of Chinese business cards by ensuring you have professionally translated, designed, typeset and printed double-sided English-Chinese business cards. Your hosts will appreciate the trouble that you have gone to for this.
3. Make it easier for those you meet.
Maybe you’ve been communicating using email with your Chinese contact for some time but this will be your first face to face meeting. You may well find that in fact, whilst their written English is OK, their spoken English may be poor. They may not be able to pronounce your name and have little confidence in even attempting to. Make it easier for them by having a Chinese translation of your name on your cards. This will help to avoid potentially embarrassing situations when you meet.
4. Have some fun.
Choosing the Chinese translation of your name to go on your name cards can be a fun process. Either go with Chinese characters that form an approximation of sounds within your English name or choose an authentic three character Chinese name using characters with positive meaning. A company that provides Chinese name card creation services will be able to provide name choices that help you with this.
5. The next guy certainly will have Chinese business cards!
Maybe you want investment or looking to secure a new customer or partnership deal. If you haven’t gone to the effort of arranging Chinese business cards printing then the next person they meet probably will have. Don’t be outdone due to something that is relatively cheap and easy to get produced.