1, Mandarin is easier to negotiate with suppliers in China. Many Chinese salesmen actually does not speak English well. Even usually one English word has different Chinese meaning. It is better to enhance mutual understanding especially on production details.
2, Mandarin can help you to check if this Chinese supplier is good or not. Such as for every Chinese company, there is a government website www.gsxt.gov.cn/index.html to see the credit and scale of the supplier. Or even when you source from Alibaba.com, a China online B2B web, you can call them to check if the supplier you choose with complaints or not. This year, It was my first time to attend Canton Fair with my Australian friend.He imported from China ten years ago, but with some garbage products when shipped to Australia. When he paced up and down in a big booth where there were many foreign buyers ans salesmen, he was attracted by what saleswomen said. He wanted to place all the orders of his project in the company, actually a big group. I obviously saw his satisfactions on his face. When we were being back to the hotel, I told him to keep alert. Don't be so much positive but neutral. Don't repeat the previous sourcing experience, but remember the lesson. Actually I indicated him all salesmen seemed to not want us to visit their branch factories or with vague expressions to their accurate factory name. When I arrived at my home, I started to investigate. As a result, the supplier originated from wood materials, but other kind of products factories are small branches. I did not think they could support for the Australia standard. Though possibly cheap, but may not suitable for Australia project.
3.To be honest, Chinese is the king of implicit y rules in the world. If you understand Mandarin or Chinese culture, you know how to do order coordination, price negotiation jobs. It is also the core of sourcing in China.Such as your production in China big factory where there are many production lines. Do you know how to push it? They often gotta rank your order importance. It will be easier to deal with these issues if you know Chinese. Of course, if your company have remote staff in China, such as China office worker/China sourcing agent, it can be faster to fix the production status, negotiate with suppliers, quality check.
Guys. If you have any ideas or questions about it, pls contact me