10 tips on how to succeed in China September 10, 2021

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When reading something about doing business in China, you learn to show respect, drink baijiu (rice wine), give business cards with two hands, never give clocks as a gift, be patient, learn Chinese ,…and much more. But very few business men have the time or the budget for this. China keynote speaker, author and nexxworks Partner Pascal Coppens - who has spent many years as an entrepreneur in China - offers different advice.

He believes that you should be yourself, and allow yourself to make all these mistakes. Chinese business men will not be offended as you are not the first foreigner making them. But he also firmly believes that you need to change how you do business in China.

Here are ten practical tips from Pascal’s succesful video channel (check it, it’s a treasure trove of China insights), that can help you make a bigger difference.

Think like a start-up.

First of all, you need to think like a start-up when you launch yourself in the Chinese market. Start-ups need to learn about their market and clients, operate with a small budget, be creative and flexible, look for customers, find money, hire an A-team, make quick decisions, be unique and do everything themselves. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that successes from other parts of the world can be copied to the Chinese market. You need to start from scratch, like a start-up

Start small, without delay.

When in China, dream big, but always start small. And don't delay it. Travelling 10 times to China can be fun, but it does not really make a difference. Don’t get distracted by all the opportunities around you. Start with one smaller city to test what works. And once you have some success, you need to really listen and constantly have a radar on the market. And when something works - one product or one service for one type of customer - define it, build a strategy around it and launch yourself into the big cities.

Don’t trust your gut.

Number three of Pascal’s China advice is “Don’t trust your business experience”. Look primarily at results and repeat what works, just faster each time. Look for people who fit your culture and who have been active in China for years in your industry. Trust these people around you. Trust the data. Trust the results. Constantly analyze your successes and then go with that and scale it from there. Don't trust your gut, trust everything around you.

Eager to learn the other 7 tips? Check Pascal’s video: