Person in suit adjusting their tie

59 Essential Business Chinese Vocabulary Terms (Including Audio)

One of the most practical reasons to learn Chinese is for work and business.

Knowing Chinese as a second language opens new doors of opportunity, and increases your hireability to employers.

This requires a lot of industry-specific vocabulary that’ll soon have you knee-deep in words pertaining to titles and positions within a company or the names of foreign companies.

But there’s no need to fear, since I’m here to help get you started on learning business Chinese.

In this guide, I’ll share with you some of the most important business Chinese vocabulary you’ll need to navigate the world of business, as well as what you need to know about doing business in China!

Contents

59 Key Business Chinese Vocabulary Words and Phrases

A. Going to Work

Person in suit sitting next to cup of coffee

1. 工作 (gōng zuò) – Work

近找到新工作了。(wǒ zuì jìn zhǎo dào xīn gōng zuò le)
I just got a new job (work).

2.  上班 (shàng bān) – Start work

我每天九点上班。(wǒ měi tiān jiǔ diǎn shàng bān)
I start work every day at 9 AM.

3. 下班 (xià bān) – Finish work

我通常五点下班。(wǒ tōng cháng wǔ diǎn xià bān)
Usually I get off at 5 PM.

4. 加班 (jiā bān) – Work overtime

公司忙的时候,我必须加班。(gōng sī máng de shí hòu, wǒ bì xū jiā bān)
During the busy season, I need to work overtime.

5. 办公室 (bàn gōng shì) – Office

我们的办公室在市中心的一座大楼里。(wǒ mén de bàn gōng shì zài shì zhōng xīn de yí zuò dà lóu lǐ)
Our office is in a tall building downtown.

6. 工厂 (gōng chǎng) – Factory

我们还有几家工厂在深圳。(wǒ mén hai yǒu jǐ jiā gōng chǎng zài shēn zhèn)
We also have several factories in Shenzhen.

7. 出差 (chū chāi) – Business trip

年底的时候,我会到北京出差。 (nián dǐ de shí hòu, wǒ huì dào běi jīng chū chāi)
At the end of the year, I will go on a business trip to Beijing.

8. 职业 (zhí yè) – Occupation

我的职业是医生。(wǒ de zhí yè shì yī shēng)
My occupation is a doctor.

9. 薪水 (xīn shuǐ) – Salary

我的薪水每个月都会涨。 (wǒ de xīn shuǐ měi gè yuè dōu huì zhǎng)
My salary increases every month.

10. 工作日 (gōng zuò rì) – Workday

工作日我通常很忙。 (gōng zuò rì wǒ tōng cháng hěn máng)
I’m usually busy on workdays.

B. People at Work

Team of people having a meeting

11. 老板 (lǎo bǎn) – Boss

黄先生是我们的老板。(huáng xiān sheng shì wǒ mén de lǎo bǎn)
Mr. Huang is our boss.

12. 总经理 (zǒng jīng lǐ) – CEO

黄先生也是总经理。(huáng xiān shēng yě shì zǒng jīng lǐ)
Mr. Huang is also the CEO.

13. 经理 (jīng lǐ) – Manager

王经理有很多年的工作经验。(wáng jīng lǐ yǒu hěn duō nián de gōng zuò jīng yàn)
Mr. Wong, our manager, has many years of work experience.

14. 员工 (yuán gōng) – Employee

我们公司有四百多个员工。(wǒ mén gōng sī yǒu sì bǎi duō gè yuán gōng。)
Our company has over 400 employees.

15. 客户 (kè hù) – Client

我们大部分的客户都是外国人。(wǒ mén dà bù fēn de kè hù doū shì wài guó rén)
Our clients are mainly foreigners.

16. 雇主 (gù zhǔ) – Employer

我的雇主很慷慨,给我加了薪。 (wǒ de gù zhǔ hěn kāng gài, gěi wǒ jiā le xīn)
My employer is generous; they gave me a raise.

17. 同事 (tóng shì) – Colleague

我的同事们都很友好。 (wǒ de tóng shì men dōu hěn yǒu hǎo)
My colleagues are all very friendly.

18. 领导 (lǐng dǎo) – Leader

她是我们团队的领导。 (tā shì wǒmen tuán duì de lǐng dǎo)
She is the leader of our team.

19. 顾客 (gù kè) – Customer

我们的顾客总是第一位的。 (wǒ men de gù kè zǒng shì dì yī wèi de)
Our customers always come first.

20. 团队 (tuán duì) – Team

我们的团队在一起已经很长时间了。 (wǒ men de tuán duì zài yì qǐ yǐ jīng hěn cháng shí jiān le)
Our team has been together for a long time.

21. 财务分析师 (cái wù fēn xī shī) – Financial Analyst

财务分析师帮助公司做出财务决策。 (cái wù fēn xī shī bāng zhù gōng sī zuò chū cái wù jué cè)
Financial analysts help the company make financial decisions.

22. 企业顾问 (qǐ yè gù wèn) – Business Consultant

这位企业顾问为我们提供战略建议。 (zhè wèi qǐ yè gù wèn wèi wǒ men tí gōng zhàn lüè jiàn yì)
This business consultant provides us with strategic advice.

23. 人力资源经理 (rén lì zī yuán jīng lǐ) – Human Resources Manager

人力资源经理负责招聘和员工培训。 (rén lì zī yuán jīng lǐ fù zé zhāo pìn hé yuán gōng péi xùn)
The human resources manager is responsible for recruitment and employee training.

C. Workplace Tools & Equipment

Hand holding computer mouse next to keyboard

24. 电脑 (diàn nǎo) – Computer

到了办公司以后,我会先打开电脑。(dào le bàn gōng sī yǐ hòu, wǒ huì xiān dǎ kāi diàn nǎo)
When I get to work, the first thing I do is turn on the computer.

25. 电邮 (diàn yóu) – Email

我每天都会收到许多的电邮。(wǒ měi tiān doū huì shōu dào xǔ duō de diàn yóu)
Every day, I receive many emails.

26. 名片 (míng piàn) – Business card

我们交换名片吧。(wǒ mén jiāo huàn míng piàn bā)
Let’s exchange business cards.

27. 文件 (wén jiàn) – Document

你有收到我寄给你的文件吗?(nǐ yǒu shōu dào wǒ jì gěi nǐ de wén jiàn má?)
Did you get the document I sent you?

28. 打印机 (dǎ yìn jī) – Printer

打印机没有纸了。(dǎ yìn jī méi yǒu zhǐ le。)
The printer is out of paper.

29. 复印机 (fù yìn jī) – Photocopier

你会不会用复印机?(nǐ huì bu huì yòng fù yìn jī?)
Do you know how to use the photocopier?

30. 电话 (diàn huà) – Telephone

我需要给客户打个电话。 (wǒ xū yào gěi kè hù dǎ gè diàn huà)
I need to make a phone call to the client.

31. 文件夹 (wén jiàn jiā) – File Folder

把这些文件整理到文件夹里。 (bǎ zhè xiē wén jiàn zhěng lǐ dào wén jiàn jiā lǐ)
Organize these documents into the file folder.

32. 桌子 (zhuō zi) – Desk

我的桌子上有很多文件。 (wǒ de zhuō zi shàng yǒu hěn duō wén jiàn)
There are many documents on my desk.

33. 椅子 (yǐ zi) – Chair

这把椅子很舒适。 (zhè bǎ yǐ zi hěn shū shì)
This chair is very comfortable.

34. 电话会议设备 (diàn huà huì yì shè bèi) – Conference Call Equipment

我们需要准备好电话会议设备。 (wǒ men xū yào zhǔn bèi hǎo diàn huà huì yì shè bèi)
We need to prepare the conference call equipment.

35. 钢笔 (gāng bǐ) – Pen

我的钢笔用完了,你有多余的吗? (wǒ de gāng bǐ yòng wán le, nǐ yǒu duō yú de ma?)
I ran out of pens. Do you have any extras?

36. 书架 (shū jià) – Bookshelf

我把这本书放在书架上了。 (wǒ bǎ zhè běn shū fàng zài shū jià shàng le)
I placed this book on the bookshelf.

37. 计算器 (jì suàn qì) – Calculator

我的计算器需要更换电池。 (wǒ de jì suàn qì xū yào gēng huàn diàn chí)
My calculator needs a battery replacement.

38. 文件柜 (wén jiàn guì) – File Cabinet

这份合同存档在文件柜里。 (zhè fèn hé​ tong cún dàng zài wén jiàn guì lǐ)
This contract is stored in the file cabinet.

39. 白板 (bái bǎn) – Whiteboard

我们会在白板上记录讨论的内容。 (wǒ men huì zài bái bǎn shàng jì lù tǎo lùn de nè iróng)
We will record the discussion on the whiteboard.

40. 扫描仪 (sǎo miáo yí) – Scanner

请使用扫描仪扫描这份文件。 (qǐng shǐ yòng sǎo miáo yí sǎo miáo zhè fèn wén jiàn)
Please use the scanner to scan this document.

41. 相机 (xiàng jī) – Camera

我们需要一台相机拍摄产品照片。 (wǒ men xū yào yì tái xiàng jī pāi shè chǎn pǐn zhào piàn)
We need a camera to take product photos.

D. Doing Business

Person signing a contract

42. 会议 (huì yì) – Meeting

我下午两点跟吴小姐有个会议。(wǒ xià wǔ liǎng diǎn gēn wú xiǎo jiě yǒu ge huì yì)
I have a meeting at 2 PM with Ms. Wu.

43. 谈生意 (tán shēng yì) – Discuss business

我们在餐厅里谈生意。(wǒ mén zài cān tīng lǐ tán shēng yì)
We discussed business in a restaurant.

44. 成交交易 (chéng jiāo jiāo yì) – Make a deal

我们终于成交了。(wǒ mén zhōng yú chéng jiāo le)
We finally closed the business deal.

45. 处理问题 (chǔ lǐ wèn tí) – Manage problems

我必须跟我的同事们里一些问题。(wǒ bì xū gēn wǒ de tóng shì mén chǔ lǐ yì xiē wèn tí)
My coworkers and I need to manage some problems.

46. 合同 (hé tong) – Contract

我们需要签订一份合同。 (wǒ men xū yào qiān dìng yí fèn hé tong)
We need to sign a contract.

47. 谈判 (tán pàn) – Negotiation

谈判还在进行中。 (tán pàn hái zài jìn xíng zhōng)
Negotiations are still ongoing.

48. 市场 (shì chǎng) – Market

我们正在研究市场趋势。 (wǒ men zhèng zài yán jiū shì chǎng qū shì)
We are researching market trends.

49. 投资 (tóu zī) – Investment

这个项目需要大量的投资。 (zhè ge xiàng mù xū yào dà liàng de tóu zī)
This project requires a significant investment.

50. 贸易 (mào yì) – Trade

贸易战会影响全球经济。 (mào yì zhàn huì yǐng xiǎng quán qiú jīng jì)
Trade wars can affect the global economy.

E. Departments Within a Company

Team working at a table

51. 会计 (kuài ) – Accounting

我们的会计部门很严格。(wǒ mén de kuài  bù mén hěn yán gé)
Our accounting department is very strict.

52. 人事处 (rén shì chù) – Human Resources

我以前在人事处工作。(wǒ yǐ qián zài rén shì chù gōng zuò)
I used to work in Human Resources.

53. 信息管理 (xìn xī guǎn lǐ) – Information Technology

我们的信息管理部门很有效率。(wǒ mén de xìn xī guǎn lǐ bù mén hěn yǒu xiào lǜ)
Our IT department is very efficient.

54. 营销 (yíng xiāo) – Marketing

营销部门需要我们的货品照片。(yíng xiāo bù mén xū yào wǒ mén de huò pǐn zhào piàn)
The marketing department needs our product photos.

55. 财务 (cái wù) – Finance

财务负责管理公司的财务。 (cái wù fù zé guǎn lǐ gōng sī de cái wù)
Finance is responsible for managing the company’s finances.

56. 销售 (xiāo shòu) – Sales

销售的任务是推动产品销售。 (xiāo shòu de rèn wù shì tuī dòng chǎn pǐn xiāo shòu)
Sales’ task is to drive product sales.

57. 生产 (shēng chǎn) – Production

生产部门负责制造产品。 (shēng chǎn bù mén fù zé zhì zào chǎn pǐn)
The production department is responsible for manufacturing products.

58. 市场研究 (shì chǎng yán jiū) – Market Research

市场研究部负责分析市场数据。 (shì chǎng yán jiū bù fù zé fēn xī shì chǎng shù jù)
The market research department is responsible for analyzing market data.

59. 管理 (guǎn lǐ) – Management

管理岗的人负责协调公司的各个部门。 (guǎn lǐ gāng de ren fù ze xié tiáo gōng sī de gè ge bù mén)
People in the management positions are responsible for coordinating various departments of the company.

Now that you’ve mastered these 59 basic business Chinese vocabulary, you should be better equipped to do business in Chinese.

But there’s still much more to learn, so I encourage you to keep on getting out there and broadening your horizons. You can use FluentU’s language learning platform, for example, to get more examples of Chinese phrases used in native settings through video clips.

FluentU takes authentic videos—like music videos, movie trailers, news and inspiring talks—and turns them into personalized language learning lessons.

You can try FluentU for free for 2 weeks. Check out the website or download the iOS app or Android app.

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Why Should I Learn Business Chinese?

Person wearing a blue suit

1.2 billion people speak Chinese (848 million people speak Mandarin Chinese), according to Ethnologue, making Chinese the most widely spoken language in the world.

Next to English, Mandarin is the top business language, according to Bloomberg Business Rankings.

Knowing a second language can increase your earning potential by as much as 10-15%, according to Ryan McMunn, President of Asian Operations at a leading U.S. manufacturing firm.

Understanding the advantage of Chinese fluency, many families go to great lengths to help their children learn Chinese, including taking their kids to China for language immersion, enrolling them in language immersion schools and hiring Chinese tutors and Chinese nannies.

What to Know About Doing Business in China

Two people looking at paper next to laptops

In addition to learning the language, one useful piece of knowledge to have under your belt is the how the dynamics of business relationships, or  (guān xì), work.

Chinese business and work culture revolves around relationships, and you cannot do business well with someone without having a good relationship.

In China, relationships can open doors, as well as get you hired or promoted.

The importance of relationships is why Chinese spend a lot of time having business get-togethers, such as eating together at restaurants, going to clubs and bars, traveling and playing golf with business associates. These business social gatherings, called  (yīng chóu), are often a necessity because of the importance of relationships.

Although learning business Chinese may seem daunting, as the Chinese proverb says, a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, or 千里之行,始於足下 (qiān lǐ zhī xíng shǐ yú zú xià).

If you want to move on to more advanced aspects of Chinese business vocabulary, etiquette and more, you can check out this guide here:

 


Essential Advanced Business Chinese Vocabulary, Etiquette and Culture Facts Every Professional Should Know | FluentU Chinese Blog

To master advanced business Chinese, you must know these vocabulary terms, etiquette rules and cultural traditions. Click here to learn essential phrases, how to save…

 

Now you know some of the most important Chinese business vocabulary words, get out there and start showing off some of your new skills!

And One More Thing...

If you want to continue learning Chinese with interactive and authentic Chinese content, then you'll love FluentU.

FluentU naturally eases you into learning Chinese language. Native Chinese content comes within reach, and you'll learn Chinese as it's spoken in real life.

FluentU has a wide range of contemporary videos—like dramas, TV shows, commercials and music videos.

FluentU brings these native Chinese videos within reach via interactive captions. You can tap on any word to instantly look it up. All words have carefully written definitions and examples that will help you understand how a word is used. Tap to add words you'd like to review to a vocab list.

FluentU's Learn Mode turns every video into a language learning lesson. You can always swipe left or right to see more examples for the word you're learning.

The best part is that FluentU always keeps track of your vocabulary. It customizes quizzes to focus on areas that need attention and reminds you when it’s time to review what you’ve learned. You have a 100% personalized experience.

Start using the FluentU website on your computer or tablet or, better yet, download the FluentU app from the iTunes or Google Play store. Click here to take advantage of our current sale! (Expires at the end of this month.)

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