Tuesday 13 March 2012

Quick Tip: Save Face

Saving face is an Asian expression, but most people around the world are familiar with the concept. It's similar to not embarrassing the other person you're talking to. In Asia you might have come across it when you ask for directions and rather than tell you they have no idea where something is, they just point you in any direction. While that can be particularly annoying, saving face will help you abroad. It's all part of learning about the culture.

Basically it means to be cool, calm, and collect. Don't confront your boss in a way that will cause them to get upset. Openly questioning them might also be a big no-no. Also, when being asked to do something you don't want to do (like work on a Saturday), rather than saying no outright, try beating around the bush, hemming and hawing and saying something like, "oh, that would be very difficult." Learning about face can be tiring, but it'll save you a lot of grief in the long run.

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