From the perspective of Zohair Hassan:
Traveling to China I was apprehensive of the challenges our team would face communicating due to the language barrier. This bias was partly enforced due to challenging interactions with the client when we were in DC. This led to a question in my head (an ignorant one); as I wondered how with a significant language barrier China has established itself as a global powerhouse. My trip from the Pudong International airport to our hotel in downtown was the beginning of an eye-opening two weeks in China. China’s development of its large cities was quite evident in what Shanghai represented with its high rises scattered all across and an intricate traffic system. There had been significant development and maybe a common language wasn’t as critical a factor as I had thought it to be.
My ignorance was further clarified during our various business visits in China. We had the opportunity to meet with representatives from the e-commerce giant Alibaba and young entrepreneurs from Fudan University. All the presentations were delivered in Chinese with English translations by our professor. We were exposed to unique business ideas and operations by both an e-commerce giants and CEO of young startups. Companies from China are growing and performing beyond their borders and their work speaks louder nullifying any language barrier if it even exists.