Work Culture World Tour:

World tour ChinaSure, you can achieve wealth and fame, but this superpower has the best possible metric of true success: being able to strut around outside in full pajama mode. Welcome to China, whose vast and ancient civilizations gave us paper, the compass, the umbrella, and, probably, the first alcoholic beverage. And whose modern civilization is has become world’s largest exporter of goods, which, sadly, do not include police geese. When working here, be mindful that relationship-building takes time, everything is negotiable, and for every favor granted, there must be an equal and opposite return favor.

We’re wheels down at the lucky (in China) No. 13 stop on our ’round-the-world video curation tour of work cultures in many nations. We invite you to join us, watch out for us on our social channels (#CultureCoordinates) and let us know what these videos get right-or don’t-about working in different countries.

 Yes means no and no means yes ….

…and saving face is key, but your checklists are not

Fast Culture Facts for China


  • 1.4 billion – with an average population density of 145 people per square kilometer (the figures dramatically change when you look at urban areas such as Shanghai which has a population density of 3,800 people per square kilometer). These numbers don’t include Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau; since they are primarily self-governing. China is the most populous country in the world.


  • 785.9 million – with a labor force participation rate of 70.89% ­– higher than the United States.  Women make up about 43.8% of the workforce.


  • China’s GDP was $13.6 trillion in 2018, making it the third largest economy in the world behind the United States and EU. The country has recently recorded its lowest economic growth in nearly three decades due to growing tensions with the United States. The largest industries in China are manufacturing (accounting for 46.8% of China’s GDP), mining, energy and agriculture.

Workforce Diversity:

  • China ranks 103rd overall in gender-equality. China’s growth towards gender parity slowed in 2018 – it has fully closed its gender gaps in professional and technical roles but it remains the world’s lowest-ranked country with regard to sex ratio at birth. Gender discrimination is rampant in China, with many job postings requiring women to be “married with children” or have certain physical attributes. Despite discriminiation, there is a good deal of gender diversity in the workforce, but cultural diversity lags. While homosexuality is legal in China, same-sex marriage is not and there are no employment discrimination protections for the LGBTQ community.




South Korea



The Philippines





New Zealand