News – Negotiating Asia

The current issue of Purchasing magazine contains some helpful guidance on conducting business meetings in Asia. In China, for instance, negotiations can take place at the dining table, where it is considered rude to use your own chopsticks to pick up food from a shared dish. In Japan, seating arrangements are very important so it is best to decide them in advance. Generally in Asia, it is polite to give your business card with both hands and with the text facing the recipient. It is also inadvisable to criticise others in front of a group.

Using interpreters is recommended even if all parties share a working language, simply to avoid any miscommunication. Interpreters also afford the added advantage of permitting speakers more time to consider their remarks. However, even with qualified expert translators in the subject matter – as Global Lingo uses – it is important to spend time in advance of the meeting preparing an agreed translation of technical terms. Global Lingo’s experienced project managers are happy to guide you through this process, so minimising the potential for disputes arising from different interpretations.