From the influence of the Spanish people, Filipinos are known to be refined, modest and unassuming. They may feel ashamed of doing some things. Their term for shame is “hiya”. Sometimes, even when they have the right or even the authority to do something, they may still prohibit their selves of doing it because they don’t like to appear like they are arrogant, cruel, rude, or have no breeding or were not educationally oriented (termed as “walang pinag-aralan”). Filipinos will really try to maintain their wit and modesty in any situation. Because of that, they may also expect other people, even the foreigners, to also behave that way when they are in any area in the Philippines
Chinese do not want to lose face. Openly criticizing others is therefore not common. If you want honest advice from a Chinese, build a strong relationship first. Only when you know the person well, he or she will feel comfortable giving you realistic advice.
When doing business, Chinese attach great importance to “Guanxi”, which is the private relationship with the partners. So please keep in touch with your Chinese friends by making phone calls with them to have a talk. This shows that they are important in your mind. Building a harmonious relationship will help you a lot when you want to do business with them.
In China, spouses are not included in business entertainments. However, it is common to bring your secretary or assistant along. Unlike in western countries, most women in China don’t smoke or drink.
Most Chinese people don’t speak very good English. It’s a good idea to get yourself a Chinese name before doing business in China. It can be your first endeavor to start a good partnership with them. Simply go to your interpreter and have your own Chinese name translated.
If your business counterparts invite you to take a bath with them, they actually mean it. In northern China, going to a bathhouse is not only a lifestyle but also a popular social activity. It is normal for same sex people to take a bath together in a public bathtub, where scrubbing service is provided. Bathhouses are usually equipped with Sauna rooms, Majongg tables, canteen, TV area and beds. It is a place for entertainment, relaxation and guanxi development.
Though it is not legal to do in China giving a bear claw to your host is considered as a great honor. The bear claw represents respect, strength and honor. There a rumors that some respected hotels in Hong Kong still keep a bear claw in the freezer for when a special person visits their hotel.
When you want to do business with a Chinese businessman or company always focus on a long term agreement. Chinese do not like the feeling that they only have the chance to have a short business agreement with you or your agency. When talking or doing presentations always make it look like your business could last for years. But also you should keep in mind that short business is never a success with Chinese. It always is a long term relation.
Chinese often speak loudly. Moreover, they talk a lot. Westerners are inclined to speak quietly to add meaning, Chinese do the reverse. Therefore, speak loudly to indicate you are saying something of significant value.
In China, a toast is always accompanied by a little speech of appreciation and goodwill. It is very common that the host makes a toast by giving a speech celebrating your business relationship and cooperation. Other people will also make toasts to express their goodwill. You are expected to do the same during the meal.
One’s salary in China is almost a public domain. It is very common to talk about one’s salary, even in daily life conversations. Chinese are particularly interested in how much westerners earn. Never get offended when the inevitable question : How much do you earn? (ni3 de shou3ru4 duo1shao3) gets asked. If you do not feeling comfortable answering the question you can always say:My salary is sufficient (wo3 de shou3ru4 gou1 le). This answer will always be accepted with no further questions.
The Chinese prefer face-to-face meetings rather than written or telephonic communication. When you are in China always try to have face-to-face communication. Contact by mail, phone or Skype is not taken that serious.