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The Chinese are known as an inscrutable people in the West. With the rapid globalisation of world business, China, with its booming economy and as one of the world's largest emerging markets, is attracting increasing numbers of international traders and investors. Various sources have shown that language and culture are, among other factors, two of the major obstacles to successful business collaborations between the Chinese and Westerners. This dissertation aims to help remove these obstacles by offering some insights into the intricate mechanisms of business negotiation between the Chinese and the Dutch. While most of the research concerning Chinese-Western communication has used everyday conversation as the subject of study, this research chooses negotiation, the core of international business, as its subject. Micro-level qualitative discourse analyses are used as the main research method in addition to ethnographic methods such as the questionnaire survey and interview. The main data used are simulated as well as real-life video-taped Chinese-Dutch business negotiations. Questionnaire survey and interview data from real-life Chinese and Dutch negotiators are used as support data. The phenomena recurrently cropping up across the negotiations are examined at a turn-to-turn level to pinpoint places where problems arise that prevent the negotiators from reaching mutual understandings and fulfilling negotiation goals. The deep-rooted cultural concepts underlying the linguistic phenomena prove to be the main trouble sources. The results of this research are relevant for both the academic and business world.
One of the most significant developments in recent years has been the emergence of global markets, which has triggered opportunities for multinational firms to seek business across national borders. Global markets offer unlimited opportunities. But competition in these markets is intense. To be globally successful, companies must learn to operate and compete in multiple environments which may be different from the home environment. One important prerequisite for success in foreign markets is the ability to negotiate properly. Global business negotiations are affected by the cultural backgrounds of the negotiators, comprising language, cultural conditioning, negotiating style, approaches to problem solving, implicit assumptions, gestures and facial expressions, and the role of ceremony and formality. Therefore, negotiators assigned to deal with their foreign counterparts need a lot of learning and skills. With training and practice such learning and skills can be enhanced. The proposed book offers a practical guide to acquire negotiating skills. The purpose of this book is to provide consistently effective strategies and systematic approaches to negotiations that will dramatically improve international managers as negotiators. The book provides sufficient familiarity with negotiating styles that will help managers identify their unique strength and weaknesses, thus enabling them to interpret and comfortably use the latest advances in the field of negotiation in dealing internationally.
"The Cultural Context in Business Communication" focuses on differences and similarities in business negotiations and written communication in intercultural settings. To set the scene, Edward T. Hall looks back at "culture" as an evolutionary concept and Charles Campbell explains the value of classical rhetoric in contemporary cultures. Further contributions present case studies of cross-cultural encounters and discourse aspects in various settings. Steven Weiss explores the proper character of six cultures: Chinese, French, Japanese, Mexican, Nigerian, and Saudi. Other chapters contrast English with cultures such as Chinese, German, Dutch, Finnish, and Irish. The book closes with two chapters on training for effective business communication and provide models in participatory training and gaming.

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