How South Korean Business Ethics Has Helped in the Development of their Country?
South Korea is located in the Korean peninsula along with its hostile neighbor North Korea, who we all know for all the wrong reasons. Probably, this is main reason why several foreign investors are reluctant to invest and start a business in Korea, with all the negative publicity around it.
However, unlike the North, the South is much different. You could say the difference between them both is day and night. South Korea is a developed nation and with a strong GDP and per capita income of $30,000, investors and businessmen alike can only get to hear good things from this amazing Asian country.
It is bordered by China and Japan too, which makes it pretty competitive. Thanks to the Korean War, the citizens of the country were badly affected in one way or the other. However, with the past behind them, the country is seeing vast developments in almost all the sectors. The automobile and electronic sector is ramping up at a rapid pace in the form of Hyundai and Samsung.
Other industries like the beauty and skincare industry is catching up too fast. South Korea is one of the fastest developing countries in the world. The reason for their developments in all sectors could be due to their business ethics. They are very strict when it comes to working rules. You could say that they are one the most hardworking people in the world putting in 12-14 hours per day.
You will also want to remember to get a wrapped small gift when you are going to meet somebody for the first time, especially when it is a business meeting. South Koreans are also very particular on how they dress and communicate. Whether you belong to the upper class or middle class families, dressing plays an important role in any industry.
Both men and women can be found spending hours in a week on makeup and facial. It is part of their culture and tradition and has influenced the way the Westerners and other Asian countries view them. Both men and women love to experiment with new looks and appearances. Their markets are heavily influenced by Confucian values.
There is a Korean saying, make a friend first and a client second. It is because of these values and traditions that the country was able to cope up during the financial crisis in 1998 and 2008 where several Asian markets as well as the American market witnessed severe decline in their resources and has many job losses.
Advantages of having a local partner in South Korea when doing business
A local partner knows the language and the communication barrier will not be a hindrance. Though many South Koreans know how to converse in English, thanks to the fact that the Americans are present there due to military partnership, only the upper class and certain citizens who have attended English medium schools and colleges can speak and write in English.
Apart from that, most of the Korean family names are more or less the same. Hence identifying people when hiring them for work or in your business becomes quite a headache. Not to mention the legal laws and rules of the country for starting a business are known by the business partner you plan on partnering with.
Unless you have a close family friend or have been living in South Korea for several years, know the language well, and are well aware about the laws of the country, you will want to consider partnering with a local agent or business investor who shares the same thoughts and ideas. This way you know that you are on the right track.