It is the same that during the interview, the interviewees need to dress up and be well-mannered, and they have to answer the questions asked by one or more than one interviewers. The difference is that, in the USA, the interviewers also hope the interviewees will ask questions, not just give answers, to ask some questions about the company, the system or something else. The interviewers want to see the enthusiasm of the interviewees and how much are they interested in the company through the questions. But in China, most of the interviewers do not like interviewees asking questions because they think this behavior is not respectful.
They just need the interviewees to answer questions, but do not pay much attention to what the interviewees ask. Secondly, there are differences in management styles. The Chinese are much stricter, more conservative and efficient than Americans. Americans are more humorous, free and open. Different characteristics determine different management styles. The Chinese boss may force the employees to work till night due to an unfinished project, but the American boss may not do that, they clearly consider that, work is work, life is life.
And also, the Chinese bosses control more, they do not allow the employees to get very involved in the decision-making process, they simply give orders. Compare to that, the Americans are more democratic. Thirdly, the relationship between employees and bosses is different. A clear hierarchy exists in most of the Chinese companies. The boss and his employees are not totally equal, at least the call and the status. But in America, the employees can call bosses’ name and also be friends with them. That’s much more a free style. The other aspect is the business etiquettes.
All cultures have rules of etiquette that must be followed in order to show respect. In China, businessmen and businesswomen are expected to dress conservatively in dark or neutral colors. Women's apparel should be modest. That means high necklines and low-heeled shoes. In America, it is also required to dress suitable, but not that much restricted. And also, understanding hierarchy is essential in China because the greatest attention, including order of address and seating, depends on the importance of the individual within the organization. Business people should know who answers to whom.
The tone of conversation matters as well. But in the America, people are free to walk and talk in most of time. They don’t pay much attention to the seating and title anyway. Chinese businessmen would say simple words like “have you had meals? ” or “where are you going? ” when they meet. This reflects one person’s care for the other, but the American businessmen would feel bad as their privacy is interfered. Last but not the least, there are some differences in the job search. In America, the applications show questions directly like “do you know some relatives in our company?
If you have, list the names. ” or “have you worked in our company before? ”. But in China, these kinds of questions are not allowed to be asked, because they show injustice or discrimination. I only mentioned five aspects about the differences between China and America in business practices. But actually, the differences are many more than I mentioned. I hope American and Chinese businessmen will understand these differences in business practices and adjust to each other better. As the old saying goes “the only way to win a war is to know your enemy well”.