Tag: entrepreneurs in China

Ralf HallerRalf Haller December 6, 2008

Book recommendation: Entrepreneurial Success in Shanghai

I found this book in a book store at the airport in Shanghai on my way back to Europe and read it in the plane, from cover to cover. This is probably one of the best books you can read if you plan to do business in China and want to understand what challenges foreigners face. The authors interviewed 20 Western entrepreneurs who have started their own companies in Shanghai. The stories range from relative newcomers who have been there only two years to the ex-Roche MD William Keller who has now been living in China for 17 years and was even invited to speak on behalf of Shanghai in its – successful – bid to host the World Expo in 2010. This wide range of stories is what provides for a great read. It is not so important if the people interviewed are right or wrong; what counts is their reported perceptions, as this is what you will also most likely experience. The people interviewed were in different situations ranging from – in one case – being an expat working for large company, to starting their own companies either right away or after having worked for a Western company first. There are tons of books out there talking about how to do business in China, but I have not seen one that is so practical and useful as this one – and exciting to read as well. In the words of Deng Xiaoping, that Mr. Keller so properly quotes: “learn from the facts”.