Communication essays critique


Due Saturday 7/26/14 - before midnight eastern time.

Unused/ Original. No copy-paste work!!


I need 2 critiques in regard to each of the essays below fitting the following reqs:

  • What did you learn from your classmate's posting?
  • What additional questions do you have after reading the posting?
  • What clarification do you need regarding the posting?
  • What differences or similarities do you see between your posting and other classmates' postings?


Essay #1

     It turns out that Mr. Xiang Fu Liu from Shaoling Enterprises in our phase 2 IP is coming to the United States BEFORE I get to visit him in Shanghai, China. He is on business for something else and wants to meet with us while he is here. He is the Chief Business Officer of their company and I would like to use this opportunity to begin a trust and friendship that could be built upon to enhance our efforts in franchising in China. Since he would be a key player in our supply chain for our franchise that we would like to set up in Shanghai, China, I have consulted a “culture coach” to establish a starting relationship with Mr. Xiang. He will be here tomorrow for a short lunch time meeting.


       I have asked the culture coach to hit upon several areas for myself and my supervisor, Mrs. Smith.


How should you handle the introduction, greeting, and handshaking?


       According to our coach, Mr. Xiang will probably be early to any lunch location we set up. I will introduce Mrs. Smith first as she is my supervisor and since the Chinese value rank and stature; her introduction should come first before anyone else. If Mr. Xiang offers his hand to her, she should shake hands but Mr. Xiang will have to initiate it because it is uncommon in China for a man to touch a woman in public. He may however bow and that would be returned to him in a calm gesture. I however will go with what Mr. Xiang initiates but I will be prepared to shake hands. (China Business Etiquette, Culture, & Manners, 2012)


How do you exchange business cards?


       It just so happens that I had several of my business cards translated into Chinese before my trip to Shanghai so I will use this opportunity to present them to him. I will offer my card and of my supervisors with both hands with the Chinese translation facing him so he can see that. I will accept his card also with both hands and then examine it with interest. I will then place it in front of me at the table and tell my supervisor to do the same. (Titles & Business Cards , 2014)


Where should you take him to lunch, and when?


       For lunch, I would choose something that is unique to the Unites States like a good BBQ or a country style restaurant. Preferably I would like to communicate with his secretary and ask if there was anything particular Mr. Xiang would prefer. Lunch would start around 12:00 and would last at least two hours per their custom in China. Mr. Xiang would have any opportunity to change that if need be. (Chinese Lunch Break , 2007)


Should you exchange gifts?


       Gifts at the first meeting are not usually exchanged. When I visit China though next month though, I will bring a small gift that would be wrapped in gold and red paper. I would avoid things like knives, sharp objects or the like because they symbolize a severed relationship. (Gift Giving, 2014)


How will you begin business discussions?


       Because it is not customary to talk business at any meal, I would allow Mr. Xiang the opportunity to begin any relevant talk about our possible venture. I have to assume Mr. Xiang has enlightened himself to American customs that allow business talk at meals and if he feels comfortable to do this, then we can proceed with it. If he does not, then when I visit China next month, our negotiations will begin. Since my supervisor, Mrs. Smith is present, if Mr. Xiang has questions, she should be the one to answer because of her position. (China Business Etiquette, Culture, & Manners, 2012)


What should not be brought up in business discussions?


       As a general rule, politics should not be brought into conversation. With the Chinese, Japan and Taiwan are also sore spots along with Tiananmen Square and human rights violations. Business is business sometimes and bringing subjects of no relevance to the table can bring anxiety and mistrust. If we don’t want to have any business in China because of those subjects, that should be decided before we invite or visit China or any country with “subjects” of possible conflict.


       I trust my culture coach and hope that Mr. Xiang’s visit goes well. With a little bit of coaching and research, we can very well be on our way to opening ACME Hamburgers in Shanghai as scheduled.



   For this discussion board post, I am documenting my plan to meet with a Chinese businessman and have the meeting be a success. Relevant to my preparation for this meeting are the facts that I have never met this person, my female boss is attending the meeting with me, and we are having lunch with the Chinese businessman.





Essay #2

   Before we attend the meeting, both my boss and I will take the time to learn some of the Chinese language. We will focus on basic Chinese terms and greetings. We will not be attempting to communicate fully with our guest in the Chinese language; rather we hope our efforts will show that we are attempting to make him feel comfortable in our country.

   When we greet our guest, we will begin with an introduction. I will introduce myself and in my introductory comments, I will include my full name, my job title, and my company. Although the Chinese businessman already knows this information, a formal introduction is considered polite in the Chinese culture (, 2012). Because I have the relationship with the Chinese businessperson, I will then introduce my boss. I will do this because in the Chinese culture, it is considered impolite to introduce yourself if you have no prior relationship. I will include the same information in my boss’s introduction as I did in mine. I recognize that in the Chinese culture the male is typically first introduced to the female, but I believe that this rule is superseded because I have never met the Chinese businessperson face to face and must first introduce myself.

   During introductions, we will also shake hands with the Chinese businessperson. During the handshake, we will not look the businessman straight in the eye; rather we will look down as lowering the eyes as a mark of respect (, 2013).

   Immediately after the handshake, we will present our business cards – which we will have printed especially for this occasion. The version of the business card that we will present will include both English and Chinese language. Each of us will remove the business cards from a card case, present the cards with both hands, and ensure that the writing is facing the recipient. Upon receiving the Chinese businessperson’s card, we will accept it with both hands, study it, and comment on it. These actions are considered the proper and formal way to exchange business cards in the Chinese culture (, 2011).

   When introducing my boss, I will clearly explain the hierarchical nature of our company and the value that she provides at the meeting. I will discuss her educational background and experience and ensure that she is well positioned to engage in the conversation. Finally, I will defer to my boss as the conversation progresses and follow her lead throughout the conversation in a show of respect for her position of authority.

   For lunch, we will attend a restaurant that has a diverse menu which includes food that is familiar in the Chinese culture. This includes rice, noodles, vegetables, eggs, fish, and tofu. This will allow my guest to either decide to sample American food or to eat food he is familiar with and enjoys.

   The giving of gifts is endemic to Chinese culture and has been for thousands of years. The giving and receiving of gifts is part of the ritual of business relationship development - and in a country where relations are placed firmly before business, gifts are therefore an important business tool. Knowing this, we will bring an inexpensive gift to the meeting to show that we appreciate the meeting and have done research on how to be polite in the Chinese culture. We will avoid expensive gifts, as this could be mistaken for bribery. We will also wrap the gift and expect that we may have to insist 2 or 3 times to get the Chinese businessperson to accept it. Finally, we will expect that the gift will not be opened in front of us.

   We will begin the meeting with some small talk to make both sides feel more comfortable. We will then have a short welcoming speech which will end with a discussion on the agenda of the meeting. We will ensure that the meeting is highly structured and we will not ask or challenge any participants directly.

   At no time during our conversation will we discuss politics. We will also avoid controversial topics such as the sovereignty of Taiwan, communism in China, etc. We will also avoid jokes as the Chinese sense of humor is quite different from those in the west and jokes told in English do not translate well to Chinese.

   As additional preparation, we will research things that are important to the Chinese such as their holidays and traditions, number combinations that they see as lucky or unlucky, and other items which would seem trivial to us but would be important and symbolic to the Chinese.

   The culture coach has been most helpful in giving us the answers to these questions and preparing us for success in our meeting with the Chinese businessperson.



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