Throughout my life I have gone to Korea multiple times since I was very young and I have been to Japan once. My stay in Korea would range from two weeks to three months. I would stay with my relatives and visit tourist attractions. My stay in Japan only lasted three days and there I stayed in Tokyo.
I want to go to China because it is a very powerful and prevalent country. I constantly hear about China in American and Korean news. I have always been curious as to how China became a international power in the business arena, and how they are maintaining that power. I think it would be very useful to my business career to observe and analyze China’s business. Additionally, since I have been to Japan and Korea I would like to go to China to fully understand east Asian culture.
I think the main professional work differences I will experience are the differing values and behavior in a business setting. With each country, there are differing normals about how to interact with coworkers, subordinates, and superiors. Furthermore, there will be different priorities. For instance, one country may prioritize speed, and another country may prioritize customer service.
I think the main cultural differences I will experience are the language and the diversity of the people. Although there may be English at the tourist attractions, the main language that our group will hear and see is Chinese. Some of the people we interact with may only speak Chinese. I also think the smaller diversity seen in China compared to America will be prominent.
I think the main political differences I will experience will be the differing political methods and the indifference about politics from the Chinese people. China is currently not practicing the same democracy as America is, so I think how government and politics are handled and seen will be very different. American citizens are very involved and opinionated in politics, so I think the fact that majority of Chinese citizens are not as involved as American citizens will be a main political difference as well.
I think the students I meet in China will be similar to me in that we will be very interested in the academic and social life of the other. I think they will be polite and curious. I also think that they will be value work more than American students and therefore work harder than some of us.
I think the major differences in living conditions will be high population density and the weather. I have heard that the major cities in China can become very crowded, something I have experienced in Korea and Japan but not in America. I also think the differing weather will be a major difference since this is something we will have to deal with on a constant basis.
I think the most enjoyable experience I will have during this trip will be bonding with my Plus 3 group and getting to experience something so new and different in a foreign country. I have never traveled abroad with peers or friends before, so this is something I am really looking forward to. I am also interested in working with foreign countries so getting to travel to one is something I am looking forward to as well.