Taiwanese vs Chinese Business Negotiation Practices

Shanghai business district

Taiwan and China are usually viewed as a single identity with the same cultures and practices, but cultural and physiological factors differ between the two nations. The relationship between business negotiation and friendly conflicts will be significantly different and the level of diversity in a cultural background has quite a considerable effect in controlling conflict situations.

Taiwan stresses adaptability and the ability to change to completely fulfill the free market mode. The competition among corporate teams is an example of multicultural business with the target of negotiations lying in teamwork. In China, we can see from its recent economic growth that free market strategies can have some flexibility within the centralized power structure. Business teams work together and complement each other. The target of negotiation is the group’s adaptability.

In Taiwan, the emphasis is on personal adaptability while dealing with business conflicts. While group competition is frequent, group relationships are still important. When facing a conflict with friends, one tends to take a softer stance. Teamwork is an inevitable result while personal interests are often left in favor of group competitiveness. Adaptation is very important here for both personal and group interests. In China, while personally dealing with business conflicts, one leans towards cooperative or conciliatory methods, but when in a group, collective leadership will win out. Everyone follows the leaders’ example. When groups deal with business conflicts, collective leadership will again win out, and all others follow. When both personal and group are combined, competitiveness will win out with cooperation and reconciliation following.

The following are a list of negotiation practices for China versus Taiwan:

China:

  • When negotiating, they create an impasse to lower their opponents’ expectations and destroy the tone of the negotiation.
  • When negotiating, they place equal regard on viewpoints and practical needs.
  • When negotiating, they are adept at using one’s strengths against one’s weaknesses or using one’s weaknesses as a bargaining chip.
  • When negotiating, they are adept at making minuscule concessions in exchange for bargaining space.
  • When negotiating, they are used to dealing with only the head or the highest levels of an organization.
  • When negotiating, they excel in the art of moving forward while seeming to move backward or exchanging a small concession for a large profit.
  • When negotiating, they will frequently honey-bait the negotiations with a high offer then cut the offer down through talks.

Taiwan:

  • When negotiating, they are used to thorough research and will frequently seek the advice of experts or consultants.
  • When negotiating, they excel in the art of moving forward while seeming to move backward or to delay for time.
  • When negotiating, they take an adversarial, yet cooperative, stance against their opponent.
  • When negotiating, they adhere to the baseline figure and will not easily budge from it.
  • When negotiating, they are adept at using one’s strengths against one’s weaknesses or using one’s weaknesses as a bargaining chip.
  • When negotiating, they seek to create a friendly atmosphere.
  • When negotiating, they will frequently ask that both sides take a concession.
Adjusting your expectations and understanding the communication style of your business partner and/or opponent is key to a successful negotiation. Contact us here for more in-depth advice.