Time Is Changing
All cultures change through time. No culture is static. Even though China is high uncertainty avoidance Culture, as time goes by, Chinese culture is changing too. The changes are more obvious in big cities, such as international cities Beijing and Shanghai. And the changes are easily seen in people’s daily life.
More than 300 million Chinese people, or nearly a quarter of the country’s population, have studied English either as a major course or as an elective subject. Experts with the workshop pointed out that it is imperative that China improves the level of English among its population to cater for market demand. Language teaching in China also requires more advanced methods and materials from English-speaking countries. Since language and culture and intertwined. The learning of English leads to a knowledge of western culture.
Over the last two decades, McDonald’s has already established 560 of their restaurants in China and soon will be adding 100 more. KFC has been even more popular. There are 1000 KFC outlets throughout the country with more than 100 in Beijing alone. Taco Bell, A & W, and Pizza Hut are not far behind. People’s wide acceptance of western food shows that people are very open to western culture.
The culture collision has an increasingly broad and deep impact on Chinese culture nowadays. Chinese culture is no more the pure and typically eastern culture. The changes in a culture make it more complicated to understand the culture. Understanding a culture nowadays requires both knowing the history and observing changes.
It is commonly assumed that China, like most eastern countries, has very few conflicts. It is true that Chinese have very few court litigations. Chinese value harmony more than justice. They tend to avoid conflict. Chinese don’t use institutions to resolve conflicts with other Chinese. In fact, big parts of Chinese social behavior have evolved with the implicit or explicit purpose of avoiding Chinese institutions like police, courts, and government structures. Therefore, Chinese seem to have less conflict.
However, most of the conflicts are solved inter personally. When there are issues between counter parties, they always have dinner together and talk. There are seldom sharp words since no one wants to lose face.
China focuses on common ground which is obvious in its foreign policy. China has consistently insisted to solve issues in the principle of “shelving disputes” and seek for mutual interest. It is the same in business. They focus on shared goals, visions and interests. There should not be absolute winners or losers during conflict resolution. Both sides should be prepared to make concessions and compromise.
Since relationship is a major part in Chinese business, developing good relationship beyond work is a good way to resolve conflict. It refers to one’s personal network of family, friends, coworkers, and associates. It is a complex web of social connections. Maintaining relationships with others can ensure respect, emotional support and possibly economic assistance from others in times of need. So when it comes to conflict, people would take relationship into serious consideration so that they avoid being rude and losing face.