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Q: Why are Chinese workers SO lazy? Why do workers lack skills? Why are employees crap?

So, a month or so ago I opened my law office here in Xi'an. No problems so far.

I did most of the initial work because I didn't TRUST the creativity of Chinese, I rented the office, kitted it out, produced the brochures, ppts and everything.

Now, I wanted to find some workers, mainly sales or marketing. I posted on 51jobs.com and on here, and got a few replies.

Anyway, I interviewed some, and they appeared fine. I hired two, and put them onto new contracts, however, before they would sign they wanted a few things removing:

Just 1 hour for lunch. They said they should have3 hours at least so they can take a cat nap. I said no, we'd work 930 430 with a one hour lunch break, that's only 6 hours a day really!
They wanted the part of the network that blocks QQ removed, they stated it was essential. I also put a block on youku and taobao during office hours...they raged. I insisted.

So anyways, after convincing them that the job offer[even for 2500 a month] was a good one and better than what they'd get, two signed.

The idea was for them to 'do their own thing', essentially I gave them phones, internet, networks, even taxi receipt money, new suits and a flashy new phone. I had business to do myself [working on some other legal meetings in other parts of the city so couldn't always visit]. I guess essentially I wanted the worker to 'figure it out themselves.'

I'm not big headed in anyway, but I'm sure straight out of uni I could phone, visit places and get on with it[bare in mind the commission I'm paying is wayyyy above national average]. I'm sure if it was my job I'd be out every day visiting places, drumming up interest, sweet talking my way etc.

Alas, these people did nothing. The foreigners I brought in to do a job for the brochures finishes the work in 2 days, got them printed, along with my business cards, all in one day. But the Chinese, man, they seem to take FOREVER. Even asking my friend to get some extra brochures printed is a chore, '3 or 4 days', then of course there's another 2 days for something else.

Also, a complete lack of ability to do anything. In England, I'd call and, even if I needed to, lie to talk to someone who could deal with me. I showed the staff how to do it, we approached a large international firm here in Xi'an, the guard was a little resiliant but I ended up saying 'We have a meeting.....I only know his English name' and we breezed through, ended up with three presentation eetings in one week.

What I'm saying is, can you trust ANY chinese staff to do ANYTHING correctly? Or am I going to have to answerthe phone, give presentations, type up contracts, maintain my website and do everything else, or is it actually possible to get staff who will work hard, use their own initiative and surprise me?

8 years 14 weeks ago in  Business & Jobs - China

 
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Posts: 9197

Emperor

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look for experience, check references, and ask why are they looking for work ,then install cameras so they don't have naps all day

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8 years 14 weeks ago
 
Posts: 2

Governor

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Pay peanuts, get monkeys. So you think you are a generous employer! It is standard to have long lunch breaks + rest in China, but to compensate, most start work earlier and finish later + work Saturdays. Should you wish EU standards of work, then pay EU level of wages and give EU standards of employment protection

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8 years 14 weeks ago
 
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Governor

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¥2500?
U get what u paid for. And if Chinese employees r not good for u, get a foreigner, see how productive he/she can be in China.

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8 years 14 weeks ago
 
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Just to reply to you people.

My company is in Xi'an, where the cost of living is around 1/10th the cost of London. In London my company pays less than 25000 RMB a month for a similar job, so I'm actually giving the 'EU equivalent', and also, did you consider the fringe benefits of the job I offer? No, because you do not know.

And Wenna, yes, I'd hire a foreigner, but China only permits certain nationalities [anyone who's Chinese but not a foreigner] to do certain things. It's crazy.

Also rlmc, the average wage is around 30 rmb an hour plus benefits, this is higher than some minimum wages in some EU countries.

Also wenna, I told you, I have employed foreigners before, they are far far far more productive, but I would actually like to have local staff based on how the Chinese do business.

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8 years 14 weeks ago
 
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you just did not find the right person. I think
wish you luck..

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8 years 14 weeks ago
 
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Governor

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I would like to comment and say that the original writer does show a certain lack experience.  Chinese workers are, in my experience, conditioned to respond rather than work on their own initiative.  This was also the case inn the former Soviet Union.  Free thinking was and is strongly discouraged.

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7 years 50 weeks ago
 
Posts: 1933

Shifu

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No, no, man, the more you pay them, the less they'll work and the more they'll "build contacts" by getting drunk at 10 AM or chatting about pop stars and haircuts on QQ. The only reason you would ever pay a Chinese person that much is because they are either a family member or a family member of a friend you owe a favour to.

I say pay them half of that, if you want them to do anything but chat with their friends. Also: only get people from other provinces. Keep them cut off.

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7 years 50 weeks ago
 
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You should edit your question and add the word 'some' before chinese workers. 
Stop generalizing. It was just bad luck.  
I know loads of Chinese that are reliabe, hardworking and really good at their jobs. Wage most times has nothing to do with it. It's all character and experience.
Next time you should try hiring those with some experience and not just degrees.

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7 years 50 weeks ago
 
Posts: 21

Governor

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you hired kids out of college gave them internet and cell phones and left them there alone.

anybody know what happened????

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6 years 36 weeks ago
 
Posts: 1426

Governor

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My wife wants you to know that its because your simple minded. She added that foreign people can be very lazy as well and that many Chinese, like her, are very hard working. 

 

"Lazy people are everywhere, it has nothing to do with nationality. Birds of a feather, maybe that is why your surrounded by lazy people.

 

"And its really sad that you only see that bad or the lazy.

 

"Maybe haters just gunna hate. We do not complain about getting up so early. Its not us, its you guys. I remember my college foreign teacher. His class started at 8am. And we thought, what the hell? We've been getting up early since high school. Then I thought you people are just lazy.

 

"And, I didn't read your post, but I thought the reason that one employee is reluctant to work for you is because we look down on you people. I've heard people call you a devil and a ghost. People just don't respect you. That's why we are lazy in front of you, because we don't respect you. 

 

"Maybe if you were a better boss you'd find some way to solve your problem rather than bitching on the internet. Bitches gunna bitch.

 

"Oh wait, just read your post. Some people are just lazy. Like Haley from Modern Family. 

 

"Anyway, I think you're a Schyster."

 

Thus Spake Mrs. Sm84

 

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6 years 36 weeks ago
 
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I know it's an old post, but.... I worked with some great employees and some terrible employees. The problem was that the great ones were not rewarded in any way above the terrible ones.

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6 years 36 weeks ago
 
Posts: 223

Governor

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Sounds like you nee better communication in the company.

 

If you aren't doing so already, you should be having daily or weekly meetings. They don't need to be long 10-15 minutes in the morning or the end of the day is fine. In these meetings everyone has to say what they are working on or what they will be working on. They need to talk about anything that went well, and most importantly talk about any problems they ran into.

 

This makes employees more accountable and it also helps everyone to learn from someone doing something right and everyone to work together as a team to figure out to improve things when something goes wrong.

 

These meetings shouldn't be about finger pointing, but simply working together to make sure everyones on the same page and things are going smoothly.  This also allows you to address any concerns or make any suggestions without having to do it multiple times to different people, you get it said to the entire staff all at once.  It also helps you monitor whats going on with your workers and the company without having to spending hours every day watching over them.

 

In my experience, when you hire low wage workers with little experience and try to have them go work on their own, they will almost always fail to meet your expectations. As the boss/manger it really is your job to mold them into the type of worker you want them to be.  And YES that usually results in you having to put in extra hours or do work that you think they should be doing, that's simply the nature of running a company though. 

 

I'm curious why no QQ?  Yes it's obvious people will use it for personal reasons during work time. At the same time though QQ is a hug emarketing tool that virtually every company/person in China uses. I think you're missing out a lot by not letting your marketing staff have access to QQ while at work.

 

I would only worry about QQ if/when some ones work starts to suffer  because of QQ. A preemptive ban on it seems pretty harsh imo. I always view that as bosses not trusting me. I think you will see that as long as there is constant communication and feedback and theres enough work for people to do, most people won't end up abusing QQ to the point where they dont get ay work done.

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6 years 35 weeks ago
 
Posts: 1140

Shifu

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EDUCATION EDUCATION EDUCATION

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6 years 34 weeks ago
 
Posts: 6321

Emperor

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5,000 years of culture....

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6 years 34 weeks ago
 
Posts: 2584

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I have seen security personnel at the security checkups sleeping in the morning. I'm out the door early and I've always been able to spot sleepers on the job here. Now, that's not implying everybody does it, but that was pretty much out in the public eye. Sleeping on a security job while you have a dozen people walking passed you every minute is really bad. 

 

I've heard of stories where people fell asleep before like when they were working long hours etc., 

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6 years 34 weeks ago

There are cookies, bookies and too many rookies for me to sit here trying to be a hooky! Looky Looky don't call me a wooky. Touchy Touchy Feely Feely Spicy Spicy Nicey Nicey & that's what the doctor Ordered!!

 
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Don't implement western business standards here in China. Business practices evolve over time to fit and reflect the culture in which they arise. In the west, employees are capable of being productive for a period of at least 8 hours with a modest break for lunch or dinner. Most people can do this with minimal hand-holding and supervision. Therefore the standard business practices schedule this way. We can speculate about why western employees are able to be productive all day with minimal supervision, but that doesn't help.

 

It is necessary to schedule your employees to work the entire day in China because that is the only way anything will ever get done. Also, those employees are used to having naps in the afternoon. Their nightly and daily sleep patterns are used to this.

 

If you are changing their sleep patterns and requiring them to work less hours then you shouldn't be surprised that productivity will completely die. The commission may not be sufficient motivation to be individually productive.

 

Right or wrong, good or bad, Chinese business practices are just plain different from the west. You're going to frustrate yourself expecting Chinese employees to work like western employees.

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6 years 34 weeks ago
 
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