The decision to live and work in China for a specified period should be well considered. Too fast of a commitment to the employer or too little preparation can quickly lead to frustration and demotivation – at for one’s self, but also for the family members, as in China you will find yourself in a completely different cultural, normative, and value circle. In order not to start China with a culture shock or risk that the assignment needs to be stopped early, we want to ensure that you can begin to directly and productively in this new phase of life. Therefore, preparation and an intense confrontation with the country, and its people is the be-all and end-all.
Moving to China
If one’s own company offers to ship their furniture to China, then it should be remembered that the landlord already furnishes 95% of all apartments and houses and it is not so easy to find an empty apartment. Therefore, it will be easier to see a suitable property without your furniture. If you still wish to have your personal belongings shipped, then a transfer would likely need about 7 to 9 weeks. This process also includes the time at the Chinese customs, where the shipment will stand for a different period.
Working in China
Workflows, company structures, corporate loyalty, managerial functions, the principle of “guanxi” (network) within the company, as well as government offices are just some of the points in which Chinese companies and everyday work in China are fundamentally different from Europe. A direct way of communicating, as we are used to in Europe, can quickly lead to a “loss of face”. For us, familiar ways of working can be misunderstood by the Chinese. Besides, there is often no clear yes or no in negotiations or talks.
We are happy to share our experience with you and prepare you accurately for your work with Chinese.
Everyday life in the distance
You will quickly become aware that living in China is very different. Chinese customs, behaviours and habits may seem exciting in the beginning. However, the working day can quickly lead to rejection and frustration. It is essential for everyone to develop a strategy for themselves so that these cultural differences do not affect their spirits as well as the minds of the accompanying persons significantly. The severity of the differences also depends on location in China. Write or call us. We are happy to advise you in detail about life in China.
The higher the economic power of China gets, the higher the Chinese self-confidence and national pride will become (this is a pointed language instead. Chinese protectionism and national pride strengthen as the country’s economic power increases). That is why it is becoming more and more important that an expat – at least – speaks some Mandarin, as the Chinese expect this more and more from foreigners. In addition, it makes it easier to arrive in China, to take the first steps in the new everyday life it would also be helpful to get used to unfamiliar everyday work life. Do not worry; Mandarin is not as hard as its reputation paints it to be. The grammar is much simpler than, for example, German. In the beginning, you should focus on speaking and listen, and put the characters back.
We will show you the best-tailored way to learn Chinese.
Cost of living
The cost of living is highly dependent on the location (different cities or areas) and lifestyle. Above all, all imported products, as well as dairy products and foreign drinks, are more expensive in China than in Germany or the US. In medium-sized cities, you can get a 4-room apartment for 200 to 300 euros a month, whereas a similar apartment in a central location in Shanghai requires at least 2000 euros.