Wednesday, May 30, 2007

China Staff Development Should Be 'Bottom-Up'

In a recent post on the China Solved Blog, they try to show that there will be a cultural and cmmunication gap between foreign employees and Chinese employees. The post goes on to address the problems and explain how a foreigner would be able to take care of the problems.

They really do care.
As the foreign boss, you will probably interact with a handful of key people and have only a nodding acquaintance with the majority of your staff. You will probably notice that most of your team barely makes eye contact with you, and that conversations tend to stop dead when you enter the room. This is a pretty creepy phenomenon, and it can cause you to jump to the conclusion that they despise and resent you. While that may be true in your case (kidding - I kid because I love), it is not the rule. Your staff is incredibly interested in making SOME kind of contact with your, but just haven’t found a method that works.

They are anxious.
They are talking about you. Discussing you. Analyzing and reviewing. Forget all that noise about globalization and the rise of empires and competing economic systems. These are 25 year olds. They are excited and nervous and ambitious and pumped up all the time. And to them, you are half-rock star and half-ET. They want to know about your life and the way you react to their world. They care about your impressions and worry about your opinions.

They have no idea how to approach you.
You may notice that when you first meet them, they may make a half-hearted attempt to build some kind of connection. It will probably be awkward and inappropriate, and you will deflect it quickly. And that’s when they start “ignoring you” and looking down when you pass in the halls.

To view the entire article at its original location click on the title of this post.

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