Advertising and Marketing

China Businesscast: Tom Doctoroff of JWT

Doctoroff: Genuine individualism does not exist in China

Tom Doctoroff is CEO of JWT Greater China and author of the book Billions: Selling to the New Chinese Consumer. In this interview Doctoroff talks about the "Confucian conflict" that affects how modern Chinese spend their money. Doctoroff argues that while Chinese are driven by their egos, they do not display genuine individualism in the way Westerners do.

Doctoroff summarizes his point of view like this:

My overall point is that culture is relative and we Westerners have to open our eyes to differing fundamental motivations. Cultures do evolve. The process however is slow and the evolutionary path is always consistent with deeply held beliefs (i.e., cultural "imperatives"). There are human truths and cultural truths. Both need to be approached with an open mind.

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There are currently 2 Comments for China Businesscast: Tom Doctoroff of JWT.

Comments on China Businesscast: Tom Doctoroff of JWT

First of all, this was more socio-political than business oriented. And I think he could have said, "individualism isn't appreciated in the same way in China" which would have been less provocative, if not necessarily more accurate. But advertising, by nature, degrades people. Also, I wouldn't say that the USA is any different, as far as the definition of success. He made some interesting points about stability, human rights and the Chinese world view. I am still waiting for the Buddhist evangelist ala Billy Graham though . . .

Wait. Let me get this right Tom Doctoroff, the highest paid western advertising professional in the people's democratic (cough) republic of china has chosen to say something that wouldn't be disruptive on the ear of his host country?

Was the cultural revolution and the great leap forward a separation of individualism and ego as Tom likes to make? Or were they just symptomatic of Geert Hofsteder's 'Confucian dynamism?

link [[Swapped out TinyURL - JDM]]

Can I even say that on a Chinese blog? I doubt it.

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