Executive Briefings

Cracking Asian Market About More Than Extending Business Cards with Two Hands

Maxims about how to succeed in Asia are everywhere -- but judging by the high failure rate of U.S. companies in Asia, there is clearly more to the game than delivering your business card with two hands. Now U.S. and European business schools are seizing on the demand for good information about Asia, putting greater emphasis on educating future executives about Asian business culture.

Michael Witt, a professor of Asian business and comparative management at the Singapore campus of INSEAD business school, and an Associate in Research at Harvard's Reischauer Institute, is at the forefront of an emerging field called "Comparative Business Systems." Witt doesn't focus solely on macroeconomic trends, but rather teaches MBA and EMBA students how to capitalize on opportunities by understanding the differences between workforces in different Asian markets.

And the differences, he says, are stark. "Everyone is playing ball," Witt says, "but they're playing very different games."

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Maxims about how to succeed in Asia are everywhere -- but judging by the high failure rate of U.S. companies in Asia, there is clearly more to the game than delivering your business card with two hands. Now U.S. and European business schools are seizing on the demand for good information about Asia, putting greater emphasis on educating future executives about Asian business culture.

Michael Witt, a professor of Asian business and comparative management at the Singapore campus of INSEAD business school, and an Associate in Research at Harvard's Reischauer Institute, is at the forefront of an emerging field called "Comparative Business Systems." Witt doesn't focus solely on macroeconomic trends, but rather teaches MBA and EMBA students how to capitalize on opportunities by understanding the differences between workforces in different Asian markets.

And the differences, he says, are stark. "Everyone is playing ball," Witt says, "but they're playing very different games."

Read Full Article