So, in today’s China: why would you have a conference in your office when you can have that meeting at Starbucks? Today, I saw ten people gathered around two tables at Starbucks and yes, they were having a staff meeting at Starbucks. Now, Xing Ba Ke has always been the place to do the one-on-one meetings but seriously, when you bring your entire office staff, it’s over the top. Then again, Starbucks has air conditioning that’s turned up colder than your office. They have free wi-fi (take that, T-Mobile/AT&T in the States). A semi-personal chef await to heat up that chocolate muffin or personalize your latte too.
Are today’s Chinese just in need of some stimulating-ly relaxing atmosphere to hold staff meetings (a break from the cubicle offices of Office Space) or is it that this is far more economic than renting space for an actual conference room in your office? And yes, this happens across Big Red (my new nickname for China).