内容

华人的危险“跟风”文化
Herd mentality: a Chinese cultural trait

 
人类往往倾向于“跟风”行为, 即让个人的行为受到其他人的影响,而华裔人士似乎更容易受到这种心理因素之左右。

While human beings tend to adopt a herd mentality – allowing the individual behaviours to be deeply influenced by others, Chinese people seem particularly vulnerable to this phycological trait. 


以大多地区的房地产市场为例,在政府采取措施给市场降温以前,许多中国社区普遍存在着购房狂潮。在2016年,疯狂的买家在大多地区争相竞价,最终成交的房屋价格甚至远超过通过收取租金来还贷和维护房屋的费用。这些一窝蜂的抢房行动几乎都非经过任何谨慎的商业思考后而为之,却更多是由于对错失谋利之机的担忧所致。换句话说,他们的慌忙入市之举,仅仅是为步其朋友,邻居和/或同事之后尘。

Take their behaviours in the GTA housing market as an example. Prior to the government housing measures to cool down the markets, home buying frenzies were prevalent in many Chinese communities.  In 2016, frantic buyers bid up purchase prices in GTA to the point where even surging rental prices could not cover home maintenance costs. These frenzied buying activities barely involved any meticulous business planning, but rather are driven by the fear of being missed out. In other words, they jumped into the market, simply because their friends, neighbours and/or colleagues participated in it.


由于安大略省房屋新政的出台,同样的“跟风”心理使得房地产市场突显停滞现象,使大量鲁莽的买家成为谨小慎微的观望者。结果,房屋交易量自4月份以来出现大幅下滑的局面。

The same herd mentality has brought the market to a sudden standstill, as Ontario housing measures has turned a flood of reckless buyers into a group of fence sitters. As a result, home sale activities dropped significantly since the Ontario housing policies came out in April. 


同样的“跟风”文化也导致某一行业内同种模式的商业实体在华裔社区内入雨后春笋般涌现,报纸行业尤甚。当某些早期投资者将目光投掷到加拿大的媒体行业后(这个在其来源国受到中国政府严格控制的,不准许私营企业涉足的行业),大批报业商人也蜂拥而至。他们甩开膀子大批作业,把整捆整捆的各类报纸堆到了超市门前,而结果却是被当作一摞摞废纸扔进了垃圾桶或用作食物包装纸。

The herd mentality has led to a spike of entities with the same business model in the Chinese community – particularly the newspaper companies. As some trailblazers set their sights on the media landscape in Canada – which is under the tight control of the Chinese government and is not licensed to private businesses in their home country, a flood of community businessmen had followed suit – they rolled up their sleeves and brought piles after piles of newspapers to grocery stores, only to see a big chunk of them being dumped into garbage or used as food wipers.  


两年前,多伦多华人社区为仅占加拿大1/10人口的提供高达大约40种不同类型的报纸刊物。而这一报纸行业的“跟风”狂潮涌还现在各个北美城市的华裔社区中,其中有许多报纸编辑们对作为媒体的社会责任或加拿大的新闻行业之操守一无所知。同样,他们办报纸仅仅是因为别人在办报。

Two years ago, there were about 40 different types of newspapers in the Toronto Chinese community, serving a readership only 1/10 of the Toronto population. A similar press frenzy appears in Chinese communities across all North American cities, with many newspaper editors being ignorant of either media responsibilities or Canadian journalism. Again, they did it because some else was doing it.  


但不幸的是,事实证明,他们当时跟错了风。就在几年之后,报纸行业突转直下。随着电子化浪潮的推进,主流报业面临着财务危机,社区报业的生存更是岌岌可危。结果,许多报商企业关闭了印刷机,彻底告别了这个夕阳行业。

But unfortunately, it has turned out that they’ve followed the wrong herd over this time. Just in a few years, the newspaper business turned abruptly into a sunset industry. As a rising tide of digital wave swept through, mainstream newspapers faced financial troubles and the community papers were in survival nightmare. As a result, many newspapers surrendered their ink and papers and left the market in droves. 


这种商业跟风现象更是席卷中国的生意商场。 根据“环球邮报”报道,自从一位中国企业家在1月份成功经营了一个通过应用软件租赁自行车的生意以来,至少有20家自行车租赁公司似乎一夜之间在中国涌现,一个好的企业商机被一窝蜂跟随者糟蹋殆尽。此外,有二百多家中国企业顷刻间做起了电动汽车业务,同时市场上涌现出大约2000个移动健康应用软件。预计涌向市场的下一个跟风狂潮的将是模拟现实之软件产品。

The rush to jump into same business activities has also been amplified in the marketplace in China. According to the Globe, ever since a Chinese entrepreneur enjoyed a booming app-managed bike renting business this Jan, at least 20 bike-sharing companies have emerged in China seemingly overnight, turning a business idea into a business stampede. Also, over 200 Chinese companies leaped into the electric-car business; About 2000 mobile health apps flooded the market; And the next wave in the line will be virtual-reality products. 


心理分析人士认为,现代中国人的“跟风”心态可追溯到20世纪的饥荒和社会动荡时期,当时的经济困境给人们造成生存危机,粮草的短缺导致人们恐慌抢购食品。尽管当今中国几十年来经济迅猛增长,但这种心理特征却遗传了下来,它让人们慌忙出手,生怕做失良机。

According to psychological analysts, the herd mentality of modern Chinese people can be traced to the famines and social upheavals of the 20th century, when financial hardship created a survival crisis and food scarcity led to panic buying. Despite rapid economic growth over the decades in China, the psychology trait has passed on genetically and this Chinese characteristic has remained, leaving people to feel that they must always be at the front line and get something before someone else. 


但毫无疑问的是,这种“跟风”文化难以在现代商业社会或全球化市场中生存。它最终将剥夺人们的反叛性思维,使他们成为没有独立思考能力的傻瓜白痴,并纷纷在在竞争激烈的全球化市场中缴械投降或铩羽而归。

But undoubtedly, the herd mentality can hardly survive the modern business world or the global marketplace. It will eventually eradicate the independent critical thinking, turning them into idiots and setting them up to fail in the competitive global markets.
 

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