Dispatches from China

Preparation is key to meeting in China

Meeting arrangements in China begin with an invitation(s) issued by one and/or all of the companies you expect to visit while in the country. If you are going to China, it is highly advised that you visit as many potential companies/suppliers/partners as possible, to get an idea of what is available.

But be careful you do not let the companies know that you will be visiting other companies, as it will complicate things. A Chinese government official told me that when he found out that a visiting foreign delegation was going to look at a different economic development zone, he called the airport and had their flight cancelled.

The process starts with a letter/e-mail indicating that you the CEO/owner are interested in visiting their Chinese company. Give yourself a minimum of six to eight weeks of lead time. You should include materials introducing your company and yourself and include ways they can independently verify the information, such as online news stories, a Dun and Bradstreet report and industry articles.

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