China MBA will language be an issue?


Hello,
I have been considering some top MBA programs in Mainland China for a carreer change (I am currently a manager in a big 4 accounting firm). Would you guys think it would be difficult to pursue my career in China without speaking Mandarin? I have worked in China years ago for a short period and at times it was complicated... I suppose my salary would also drop because of the lower cost of living...
Thanks,
Fred
Hello,
I have been considering some top MBA programs in Mainland China for a carreer change (I am currently a manager in a big 4 accounting firm). Would you guys think it would be difficult to pursue my career in China without speaking Mandarin? I have worked in China years ago for a short period and at times it was complicated... I suppose my salary would also drop because of the lower cost of living...
Thanks,
Fred
quote
jtrak
Chinese is quite important ? for Foreign Chinese MBAs wishing to work in Asia that do not end up learning Chinese, they often end up focusing their job search in Hong Kong, Singapore, or Southeast Asia. These markets are pretty tough to find jobs in today?s economy and are quite detached from the Mainland, with the exception of Hong Kong (assuming you are doing frequent business travel to Mainland). The foreigners often sell their China MBA experience to these areas, who often feel they need more employees that understand Mainland China while also having fluent English skills. Even if you have a good 5 years of work experience in one specific field, companies operating in China would like to see some Chinese. The way around this is to convince the Senior management of a company to fast-track you through human resources.

Chinese language levels for foreigners can be broken into the following ?

1) Survival/Basic ? good for social and getting around ? but not quite useful for work.
2) Fluent Listening/Basic Speaking ? Often the minimum needed to work in China (and that is assuming they only want to hire a foreigner) ? Can you listen to a meeting/telephone conference. This is why overseas Chinese get jobs easier, as their parents spoke to them in Chinese since they were born.
3) Fluent Listening/Good Speaking/Some Reading ? The standard now for foreigners to work in China. You are still at a disadvantage since you likely cannot give a presentation in Chinese in front of 20 people and do Questions and Answers. Reading means being able to read e-mails in Chinese.
4) Fluent Listening/Fluent Speaking/Can Read Chinese Newspapers without problem/Writing E-mails on Computer in Chinese ? This should give you a good foundation to get a job in Mainland China.

Getting to Stage 3 can be done in 1.5 to 2 years (during the MBA experience ). Getting to Stage 4 can take 2.5 to 3 years, since memorizing 5000 words is quite challenging. Many foreigners who get between stage 2 and 3 and are able to go to Hong Kong/Singapore/Asia and find jobs. Employers there value the intermediate Chinese much more than in Mainland.
Chinese is quite important ? for Foreign Chinese MBAs wishing to work in Asia that do not end up learning Chinese, they often end up focusing their job search in Hong Kong, Singapore, or Southeast Asia. These markets are pretty tough to find jobs in today?s economy and are quite detached from the Mainland, with the exception of Hong Kong (assuming you are doing frequent business travel to Mainland). The foreigners often sell their China MBA experience to these areas, who often feel they need more employees that understand Mainland China while also having fluent English skills. Even if you have a good 5 years of work experience in one specific field, companies operating in China would like to see some Chinese. The way around this is to convince the Senior management of a company to fast-track you through human resources.

Chinese language levels for foreigners can be broken into the following ?

1) Survival/Basic ? good for social and getting around ? but not quite useful for work.
2) Fluent Listening/Basic Speaking ? Often the minimum needed to work in China (and that is assuming they only want to hire a foreigner) ? Can you listen to a meeting/telephone conference. This is why overseas Chinese get jobs easier, as their parents spoke to them in Chinese since they were born.
3) Fluent Listening/Good Speaking/Some Reading ? The standard now for foreigners to work in China. You are still at a disadvantage since you likely cannot give a presentation in Chinese in front of 20 people and do Questions and Answers. Reading means being able to read e-mails in Chinese.
4) Fluent Listening/Fluent Speaking/Can Read Chinese Newspapers without problem/Writing E-mails on Computer in Chinese ? This should give you a good foundation to get a job in Mainland China.

Getting to Stage 3 can be done in 1.5 to 2 years (during the MBA experience ). Getting to Stage 4 can take 2.5 to 3 years, since memorizing 5000 words is quite challenging. Many foreigners who get between stage 2 and 3 and are able to go to Hong Kong/Singapore/Asia and find jobs. Employers there value the intermediate Chinese much more than in Mainland.
quote
a_mukerjee
thanks for the very informative mail, jtrak!

it seems that knowing Chinese is very important indeed for working in Asia!
it was disscused in length in fhis article about EMBA programs in east asia:

http://www.find-mba.com/article/320/the-eye-of-the-tiger-a-look-at-emba-programs-in-east-asia)

i think that knowing the local language is important everywhere, as this would always help you understand the local markets better, and thus increase your business opportunities.
thanks for the very informative mail, jtrak!

it seems that knowing Chinese is very important indeed for working in Asia!
it was disscused in length in fhis article about EMBA programs in east asia:

http://www.find-mba.com/article/320/the-eye-of-the-tiger-a-look-at-emba-programs-in-east-asia)

i think that knowing the local language is important everywhere, as this would always help you understand the local markets better, and thus increase your business opportunities.
quote
chinese languages are really difficult to learn within a short time, but if you pay attention or focus on it ,believe that you will chieve a good performance.

有志者,事竟成!
chinese languages are really difficult to learn within a short time, but if you pay attention or focus on it ,believe that you will chieve a good performance.

有志者,事竟成!
quote

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