Friday, January 20, 2017

My Supplier is Visiting!

On Jan 12, 2017, at 10:10 AM, JJ wrote:

Greetings ...
The company I do business with in China is coming into San Francisco to see me and would like your thoughts on how I should entertain them.  I know nothing of Chinese culture and I want to learn quick and be a good host. 
***First off keep in mind they want to experience USA culture, so no Chinese restaurants. You are their customer, so they love you no matter what.***

Should I pick them up at airport, show them around or merely set up a meeting?
*** Ask them if there is anything you can do to help make their visit a success.  Then they will name what they want.  You can subtly limit things by asking "when should we meet?"  When you know their plans, you can advise accordingly...  "Big Sur is beautiful this time of year, but the road just washed out... on the other hand, Carmel is worth the trip... ***

 Should I offer to pay the dinners and such?  My view is that we are truly business partners, when I succeed they succeed so in a since they are my most important piece of the puzzle and want to treat them as such. 
***Have they hosted you over there?  if so, you have a template:  any less and you are insulting, any more and you embarrass them.  And either way, you'd be modulating the relationship.  Think in terms of where you want the relationship to go?

In any event, say just that to them during meets "You are the most important piece in the puzzle..."

Also, never take them to your house (unless years from now you are truly friends) , that is too obliging...*** 
There are many ... companies in China but I have stuck with one company faithfully and want to continue to do so.  Any thoughts would be appreciated. 
***So figure a budget you intend to spend, and then when they signal their intentions, you spread that budget over the time alloted...

If they want a wine country experience,  depending on the balance, you can either put them on a bus at your expense, or arrange a booking at their expense... or escort them yourself...  all depends...

As to gifts, simple...  like UC Berkeley sweatshirts (the ones that just say "Cal" are good) so they can be cool back in China...

But remember, don't go much more than they go for you over there.... that's the rule of thumb.


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