Customized Business Mandarin

Hello everyone!  Welcome to our Business Mandarin Course. In 2012, I designed a practical Business Mandarin Course for a Canadian business man.  It was different from any other business Mandarin course I had seen, because it was practical.  The course lasted for 6 weeks.  During the first 4 weeks I put together some business Mandarin materials and practiced the materials with him.  During the last 2 weeks we went to Shenzhen and Guangzhou to visit some suppliers and attend some exhibitions.  Both of us learned a lot from this experience.

商务汉语He was quiet satisfied with my course and suggested that I should start to make the practical business Mandarin course available to more foreigners who want to do business with Chinese or work in China.

Just take greeting people as an example. When a foreigner first meets a Chinese person, they may ask, “你叫什么名字? Nǐ jiào shénme míngzi? “ Right?  And this is ok for a casual occasion, however, meeting professional business partners or potential clients in a business situation requires a different type of greeting.  One should say, “您贵姓? Nín guì xìng ?”, or to show respect “您nín” is the respectful way to say “you”, 贵guì means expensive, 姓xìng means surname, so the literal translation of this phrase is ‘may I have your expensive surname ?” This saying was developed from ancient times. A surname in those days could represent your status in society, for example, people with the surnames Wang and Xie represented the rich and powerful upper class.

商务汉语2These surnames are no longer status symbols but one should be aware of this essential means of expression within the business context.   When answering the question, we should say “免贵姓Miǎn guì xìng +our surname” showing a level of modesty.  For example, My last name is “黄Huáng” so I should answer, “免贵姓黄Miǎn guì xìng Huáng”.

I also discovered another interesting thing.  I heard that in western countries passing on business cards are done causally without any particular form.  In China, there is a particular method that shows respect.  One should use 2 hands with the business card facing the other person for them to read easily.  One should also receive a person’s business card with 2 hands and inspect the card with great interest to show respect.


This is just one example of what would be covered in our Business Mandarin Course. If you are interested please BOOK COURSES at MarcoPolo Mandarin, study Chinese in Yangshuo.

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