Mingus teaching Chinese students how to get crazy ideas

🛌 European designers work less and take more time 
A Chinese designer works during weekends, makes extra longs hours and delivers faster than the average European designer. It is only when it comes to coming up with creative concepts that European designers (sometimes) have an edge over their Chinese counter parts.

🤯 Build the product, ditch the ‘why’ (mission or value proposition)
Chinese entrepreneurs don't do value propositions, missions and 'the why'. They just build a product around metrics and then keep optimizing. We 'lost' valuable hours defining our 'why'. In fact, we have a whole industry around value propositions called 'consultants'.

👩🏻‍💻 Iterate & copy what works
Take one service or product, define how to measure its success and optimize, copy, throw away what doesn't work and keep building at an insane pace. That's how Chinese product development works. 

👔 Get status
Win important awards, sit on respected boards, have a government connection; in Europe this sound sensible, but who has the time? However, in China these things are crucial and they will get you places. We leveraged a lot of interesting meetings because of our position in the board of the association of Dutch designers.

🤷🏻‍♀️ Embrace the long, directionless meeting
Meetings are toxic, they say. Well in China meetings are longer than your grandmother's visit. The longer, the more successful. And when is that deal being discussed? Probably not during the meeting after all, but somewhere over a beer (three hours later).

🇨🇳 Don’t do business in China, when you have no plans to settle in China
To do business with the Chinese, you have to live and work in China. Understand the culture, have patience (probably years) before something comes out. China is a giant market and super interesting, but it has a completely different dynamic.

📚 Get your base right
Focus on delivering always good work in whatever field, instead of doing one element extremely well. A Chinese employee wins with fast and good enough. Europeans lean more towards slow but perfect.

😎 Keep it cool
In meetings we tend to present our best work. It's better to keep your cards close to your chest and wait. So don't start your key note presentation just yet, focus on casual talk. If you put out all your cards at once, in this market you will lose. 
Links to check out / Books to read
Some things we have read, we think you should read too:
📄 An excerpt from Yuval Noah Harari's latest book on how to think of 2050, interesting insight: we need to learn to be more human - WIRED (UK)
📄 Former head of Google China Kai-Fu Lee on China's rise in technology and AI - IEEE Spectrum
📄 Cheer up, Deutschland - Why Germany (and probably the rest of Europe) shouldn't be so depressed all the time - The Economist
📕 Factfulness, Hans Rosling - Learn why we score lower than chimpanzees on a questionnaire about the state of the world
📕 The Three-Body Problem, Cixin Liu - Logic, theoretical physics and sociology are used to show how the world would react to a catastrophe

Get smarter, read these too