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Different Ways

30 Aug, 2013 By: David Gibbons

I’ve just returned to China, from a trip to India. In both countries, it would appear anything with a wheel has good reason to share the same road. Buses and trucks are jammed up next to bicycles, carts and vehicles which resemble props from a Mad Max movie set, yet powered by not much more than a lawn-mower engine. It’s different.

According to an Internet-based survey of 2,000 travellers from 80 different countries, Italy has the most notorious reputation for driving, where “the red, yellow and green traffic signals … are obeyed no more than Christmas lights.”  That’s different, too.

Earlier this year, I travelled to Germany and Switzerland.  In Switzerland, there is a “no honking” law—something that would not work in Asia where you are obliged to honk to advise wobbly bike riders and pedestrians on the road that you are behind them and coming through. 

Then it occurred to me; the way people do business in each country is different, too.

Driving Your Business…

In many cases, business is somewhat similar to the way people drive in their country. The precise, sleek and sharp business practices of Germans do resemble their autobahn roadways. And the use of driving within the dotted lane as being “a suggestion” in India and China reflects the opportunities its citizens will take, to do business there.

At first, as an Australian now living in China, I found the different ways of driving offensive.  I’m sure I would have been shot if I tried the same techniques in Los Angeles, for example.  However, I have learned there is not really any right or wrong—it’s just different. Thus the way I must do business in each country, must also be different.

So if you think the Chinese will simply abandon the lucrative US market because of the recent GEO, then I think you’re mistaken. It’s simply not how they do business. They will look for a workaround solution that might resemble their drivearound obsession on their roads!  

This is, after all, one of the reasons why the clothes you wear, the tools you use, and the products you consume mostly come from China. Printing consumables will be no different. One excellent result from the GEO will be a new respect for the intellectual property of OEMs. But it will not stop the different, yet innovative ways others in other countries do business.

David Gibbons is an Australian who has been a school principal, TV and radio broadcaster, and has also run his own imaging supplies business. He is currently based in Zhuhai, China as a Director of Recycling Times Media in publishing, broadcasting and events. Visit http://www.irecyclingtimes.com

About the Author: David Gibbons

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