How the Chinese deal with failure – CSMonitor.com
The big difference is that in the US this is not a cause for shame, but regarded as a natural result of the risks that small entrepreneurs take. In China it is seen as a reflection – and a poor one – on the officials who sponsored the entrepreneurs.
I could not find out exactly how many of the businesses launched through the Wuxi incentive program had gone bust. The program managers were not allowed to talk to me, and the city government refused to do so. The businessmen with whom I talked suggested, anecdotally, that around half of their peers had given up within a year or two.
This is not surprising to anyone anywhere in the world familiar with the pitfalls of starting a small business. But the official Chinese attitude is indicative of a deeper mindset that may prove an obstacle in the long term to the country’s ambitions to boost innovation by tempting home people with experience abroad.