From the author of the acclaimed Mr. China comes another rollicking adventure story - part memoir, part history, part business imbroglio - that offers valuable lessons to help Westerners win in China.
In the 21st century, the world has tilted eastwards in its orbit; China grows confident while the West seems mired in doubt. Having lived and worked in China for more than two decades, Tim Clissold explains the secrets that Westerners can use to navigate through its cultural and political maze.
Picking up where he left off in the international best-seller Mr. China, Chinese Rules chronicles his most recent exploits, with assorted Chinese bureaucrats, factory owners, and local characters building a climate change business in China. Of course, all does not go as planned as he finds himself caught between the world's largest carbon emitter and the world's richest man. Clissold offers entertaining and enlightening anecdotes of the absurdities, gaffes, and mysteries he encountered along the way.
Sprinkled amid surreal scenes of cultural confusion and near misses are smart myth-busting insights and practical lessons Westerns can use to succeed in China. Exploring key episodes in that nation's long political, military, and cultural history, Clissold outlines five Chinese Rules, which anyone can deploy in on-the-ground situations with modern Chinese counterparts. These Chinese rules will enable foreigners not only to cooperate with China but also to compete with it on its own terms.
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Two books in one, one excellent one boring
The book actually consists of two sections, which alternate from chapter to chapter. One of these consists of 'Chinese rules' derived from very interesting historical events and figures. Among these are Macartney's visit to the Qing court, The Taiping rebellion, Mao Zedong's Cultural Revolution and Deng Xiaoping's opening up and reform. I have read about of of these many times before but I still found these chapters highly enjoyable, well written and informative. The way they conclude with a clear learning that still applies to (doing business with) China today is very useful.
The other half of the books tells about Clissold's trials and tribulations as a carbon credit trader. Maybe it's the fact that carbon trading is a rather dry subject matter which I have no real interest in, but I found these chapters to be dragging and boring. With the exception of a case of forged documents by one of Clissold's business partners and a disastrous baijiu night there's not much that stuck from these chapters. Also, the way they are supposed to illustrate the five rules that are described in other chapters feels forced.
I would have loved to read about another 5 lessons instead of Clissold's personal business dealings.
Maybe, depending on the subject matter.
Haven't heard any of his other narrations. I found his work on this book enjoyable because it comes with a typical English delivery that suits the book. His pronounciation of Chinese words and names is not very good but I found it less annoying than with other performers.
- E. Sander
great book if you ever went to china
- Ethan Wang