Australians tend to underestimate the importance that Asians place on building rapport prior to discussing business matters.
In practical terms, this could mean holding off until up to one week before you start raising topics that would typically be addressed on Day 1 of an equivalent business introduction in Australia. The problem is that failing to first invest sufficient time in developing personal relationships could inadvertently leave you wondering why your Asian counterpart has lost interest even before you’ve taken a seat at the negotiating table.
This is one of the mistakes that intercultural consultant Craig Shim shared with local businesses at RDA Moreton Bay’s recent Exporters Workshop. During this interactive session, local exporters and other professionals worked collaboratively in teams to solve a negotiation scenario.
The workshop format for this event facilitated by Craig Shim generated plenty of discussion. “Working with fellow locals on this type of practical exercise is a valuable way to tap into the knowledge and expertise that already exists within our region” commented one of the workshop participants.
Workshop facilitator Craig Shim is the Director and founder of Alphacrane Intercultural Specialists, a locally-based consultancy specialising in cross-cultural business and communication skills.