Saturday, May 24, 2014

Inside Knowledge by Michael Backman

Streetwise in Asia 
Business information is one thing which should not be economized on.
While doing business in Asian markets it is very essential to understand that the scope of what constitutes business information is much wider. 
Asian business community  does not draw a solid line between the  business and non-business activities. 
Many apparently non-business aspects like family, personal connections, leisure pursuits like Golf, art collection etc. have a business component.

This book by bestselling author Michael Backman provides crucial insights into such Asian business themes. 
Through numerous examples, case studies and anecdotes it provides a  valuable guide for anybody who wants to business takes in Asia by enabling them get to grips with Asian business and understand how Asia really works.

The book begins with a chapter on people's names in Asia which shows how important it is to understand Asian naming structures for doing business in Asia.

Thereafter the book is divided into two parts: "Places" and "Markets".

"Places" includes  chapters which describe the business scenarios of  China,  Central Asian States, Malaysia and Nepal. It also has a chapter on Australian expatriates which analyzes their prominent role in the Asian offices of accounting, law and other professional services firm.

The second part of the book "Markets" deals with various commodities, products and crazes that are either unique to Asia, have come to be dominated by Asian countries, or have a particular Asian flavor.
The markets addressed  include business process outsourcing in non-Indian Asian countries like China and Philippines; Asian art and antiques; birds' nests; rare fish; diamonds; casinos; sandalwood; arms and ammunition; bad loans and distressed debts.
This part also has chapters on the secrets of Asia's five-star hotels and their guests; Thailand's sex industry; Asia's Coffee Shop revolution; India's wealthy Parsi community.

A very interesting and informative book that provides the much needed nuances to successfully do business in Asia or with Asian communities. 
Almost a decade has passed since this book was published. So some  facts and figures mentioned in this book would have become outdated. It would be great if the author comes out with a revised and updated edition of this book.

A highly recommended read !

Goodreads Rating - 4.67 out of 5 ( 3 Ratings)

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