We’ve discussed the value of guanxi when starting up in China, but there is another cultural phenomenon: “giving face” (给面子, gei mianzi). This can be one of the most difficult pills to swallow for foreigners starting up in China but can prove to be an extremely valuable asset for those that can pull it off well. This episode dives into how to mitigate your frustrations over some of China’s systems and bureaucracy, and where to look for opportunities instead.

Jared has demonstrated the “cowboy attitude” perfectly in his path to China, leaving behind a great corporate offer post-MBA, liquidating his assets, and bringing his wife and two kids to China on a whim of interest in the Middle Kingdom. Now a family of 6(!), Jared is growing his newest baby, Cinnaswirl, into one of Shanghai’s hottest brick-and-mortar startups.

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