For sure Chao knows his China. He learned the culture from his grandmother. He acquired his strategic skills from top American university business schools and over fifteen years of work experience in Japan, China, and Singapore. He puts equal weight on what his grandmother taught him and what he learned at universities and on the job. Chao front loads the book by debunking many of the preconceived notions that most small to medium size business owners would typically hold about Chinese culture and how to do business with their Chinese counterparts and government officials. But falsehoods aside, the author makes it clear that cultural and language differences probably are still the two most difficult barriers to success that SMB’s must overcome. Like the book overall, Chao offers logical and reasonable strategies and approaches to obstacles that make the process seem less formidable than most readers probably would have thought.
The content of “Selling to China” is substantive and presented in an easy-to-follow manner. Each of the book’s eleven chapters states what the reader will learn at the outset of the chapter and concludes with a succinct summary of the chapter’s key points. Chao’s writing style is informal and occasionally humorous with no academic tone or manner. He sprinkles the book with engaging stories and case study vignettes that successfully held my interest throughout. While Stanley Chao is President of All In Consulting, which specializes in working with small to medium size businesses in the $5M to $250M sales revenue range, I never detected any content that read as self-serving or self-promoting. Chao is plain and simple, a very good non-fiction writer who knows his subject.
“Selling to China” by Stanley Chao is a timely, relevant read for SMB owner’s who thinks they’re ready to take on China. And Stanley Chao is a thinker and strategist whose book might be able to help you predict your chances.
Selling to China
Reviewed by Joseph Yurt for Reader Views (7/12)