Something You Should Know When Moving To China

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Before going to a new country, it is always good to know something and prepare yourself in advance. China is a dynamic and vibrant country but before moving to it, you’d better learn about what your work in China like and understand some Chinese "rules."


The Work life in China

If you choose to work in China, there is no need to worry about meeting colleagues who are difficult to communicate and get along with. Most of your colleagues are very kind-hearted and friendly who will be willing to help you get acquainted with your new job, take you around the city, and even invite you to their home for dinner. In addition, there are some local people who are excited about seeing "foreigners", so they are likely to discuss your country's culture and your experiences.

Most Chinese work for long hours, and many companies often require employees to work overtime to complete all the work. The good thing is that the staff generally have a 60-minute lunch break, and you can make good use of this time to rest your brain. Regarding holidays, Chinese companies will have statutory holidays and traditional holidays, such as National Day and Mid-Autumn Festival so you will have several days off at the festivals. But you may not get holidays on Western holidays, such as Christmas, if you work for a local company.

In addition, any foreigner considering working in China must choose a formal company to ensure that you can complete all the paperwork and successfully obtain a legal work visa (z-visa).


Chinese business culture

It’s common for expats working in China encounter culture shock. A classic example is that Chinese people are accustomed to using "foreigners" instead of “expats” which makes many foreigners feel alienated, but in the eyes of Chinese people, it is just a common neutral word.

Furthermore, the difference between foreigners and locals in some companies will be very obvious, while this is not discrimination but just for convenience. For example, Chinese employees and foreign employees have different dining locations only because of their different eating habits.

If you don't know Chinese at all, you had better learn the basics of Chinese and some daily expressions to ensure that you can communicate with locals in your daily life, otherwise your inability to speak Chinese will cause trouble in your life. If you work in a big city in China (such as Beijing and Shanghai), they may hire assistants or translators for you if you have enough value. However, if you are only qualified for an entry-level job, you should learn to speak simple Mandarin and make sure that you can live independently in China, such as calling a taxi, calling for food, or asking for directions.


Chinese social customs

There are a great number of social customs in China, but you just need to know some golden rules and taboos.

The golden rule: accept or provide anything with both hands; be grateful for what others provide you; take off your shoes before entering the door and learn to use chopsticks correctly

Taboos: address the elders by their full names; open the gift in front of the host (unless he/she allows); point at others or knock the bowl with chopsticks


Check here to find out more info about living and working in China


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