Thriving in Business in China with Fair Play
(Minghui.org) Can businesses be successful in today's China without bribes and kickbacks? Many would say no. I had the same idea, too, until I started practicing Falun Dafa in 1995.
I faced the choice of conducting business ethically, which my notions told me that I would then lose out, or truly believing in the values of Truthfulness-Compassion-Forbearance and trusting in finding a solution consistent with my belief.
Let me share with you the challenges I encountered and the joy of improving my heart and mind.
Declining a Kickback During a Negotiation
I worked at a foreign company at the beginning of my cultivation. This company just won a contract of several tens of millions of yuan. I was tasked with purchasing insurance for transporting information technology (IT) equipment purchased for the new project.
I compared the service of several vendors and preferred one of them, but the vendor's price was relatively expensive. In response to my request of a lower price, the salesperson said, “Let's not lower the price. After the ink is dry, I will share the premium with you.”
I became uneasy and quickly finished the conversation. The very reason that I left a state-owned enterprise to work at this private company was for more money. I was all of a sudden offered a kickback several folds of my salary. How could I possibly not be moved?
However, I also knew that I had become a Falun Dafa practitioner and that I should adhere to Dafa's principles to be a good person for my company and society. I knew what I should do after careful consideration.
Therefore, I called the representative and asked for a lower price again. He mentioned his offer again. This time, I told him that I wouldn't take the offer. If he did not make a better offer, I would then select another vendor. The representative became very respectful to me. We settled the contract at a lower price.
I was not so obsessed with money anymore after this experience.
Resolving a Past Unethical Practice
Another challenge soon came. A former client called me and offered me a kickback we agreed upon before I started cultivating Falun Dafa.
It was about a million-yuan project this former client was going to award to me. We agreed that I would give him kickback. He asked me to get more kickback allowance from my company and said that he would share the kickback with me.
This happened before my practicing Falun Dafa. But the award didn't happen before I left my previous company. I then forgot about it. He now called me because the project was about to start and he wanted to award the project to me as agreed.
I was thrilled back then and quite proud of my plan: I would get a commission from my company for winning the bid and then have a share in the kickback he would receive from my company.
However, my heart was heavy as I hung up the phone. I knew that I was wrong according to standards of Dafa. But I should also take care of him and his project. I eventually thought of a solution: I found a friend at an established company that could take care of the million-yuan project well for my former client. I connected them. The former client didn't contact me again.
Firming up Ethical Approaches
I became more confident in being successful in my profession as a salesperson and adhering to the requirements of a Falun Dafa practitioner, even if it meant losing business.
My company was bidding for a campus IT network project. My manager told me, “Just tell them that we are a foreign-owned private company. We are very flexible. We will try to fulfill their requests.” I knew what my manager meant. He meant that I should win the bid with bribery.
I didn't want to do it. But I also knew that if I lost bids and couldn't meet my sales quota, then I might lose my job. It was a difficult decision. Eventually, I made up my mind: I would conduct business ethically, even if it meant losing my job. We didn't win the bid in the end. I was somewhat stressed. Luckily, my manager didn't criticize me. He knew that I had always worked hard.
Soon after this, I won a bid for a big project with fair play. This stunned the leadership and my colleagues in the company. They, too, started thinking that offering bribes might not be the only way to success.
I have now become a seasoned sales leader and have successfully won many important projects for my company.
I am glad that I have found a path to success without succumbing to the unethical demands in the business world in today's China. I am also happy to serve as an example to my colleagues and managers: being a good person has its own rewards!