Politics

Why so many Chinese want to go back to China?

Microsoft expert123
Feb 10

I heard from Chinese co-workers that a lot of them want to go back to China in a few years after gaining the work experience here. But from what I read, you can get arrested for saying wrong thing in China. The food safety is so horrible that Chinese have to travel oversea to buy infant forumla. The air pollution there makes people wear mask everyday. The WLB in Chinese tech companies are non-existent.

Why would any Chinese want to go back to China to torture thenselves and not enjoy the high paying job and the fresh air in the US? The shorter and shorter Chinese citizen green card backlog also suggests Chinese are not staying in the US. Anyone can explain the paradox?

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  • Amazon BfRx68
    Also, it’s easy to make it look like a bad decision when you focus on the worst aspects of a country. I could ask why anyone would want to stay here in a country that looks down on immigrants, has a racist attitude towards minority groups, where people can go around buying guns and killing people, etc.

    That’s not the complete picture.
    Feb 1012
    • Salesforce op
      @google dude is extremely brainwashed if he thinks this could describe Russia.
      Feb 10
    • Microsoft baaaaallls
      Certainly not the 🇺🇸. No idea where this person's head is at.
      Feb 10
    • New IAmPepe
      Sounds like China without the guns. The Chinese are not friendly to immigrants and are also pretty racist towards minority groups.
      Feb 10
    • Microsoft / Engaoc
      Give me a break. Does China not look down on immigrants, racist to minority groups?
      Feb 10
    • Microsoft Desitechie
      I'm from India and I can assure you one works face more racism in India even as an Indian then the US
      Feb 10
    • Amazon BfRx68
      Please read my comment and at least try to understand the point I am trying to make. I am not comparing US with the world but pointing out that it is not perfect and if you focus on the worst aspects, it is not appealing. Also, with regards to racism in India, there is racism but not against Indians. Likewise, I doubt Chinese are racist against other Chinese.
      Feb 10
    • Amazon BfRx68
      Microsoft, please explain to me how Indians can be racist against other Indians. We are all brown aren’t we?
      Feb 10
    • Microsoft Desitechie
      Feb 10
    • MathWorks fXss35
      Microsoft means colorism and casteism. Indian are very discriminatory back in the country. Especially non urban regions
      Feb 10
    • Microsoft Desitechie
      That's about what I said. Except for the part about Microsoft
      Feb 10
  • Microsoft BiggieMac
    It’s mostly because their family is there but also because they are sick of the visa bs they have to go through.
    Feb 105
    • Microsoft expert123
      OP
      There is no visa issue for Chinese at all. They get green card in only a few years. They can sponsor green cards for their family as soon as they get GC.
      Feb 10
    • Oracle l00tb0x
      Don't they need a visa to _leave_ PRC?
      Feb 10
    • Okta doomsday
      OP, their h1b visa stamp expires every year. Just fyi
      Feb 10
    • Morgan Stanley jumpornot
      GC does not allow you to sponsor family’s GC
      Feb 10
    • Amazon pleH88
      Chinese visas are so much worse for foreigners wanting to settle in China XD
      Feb 10
  • Oracle l00tb0x
    Patriotism.
    Feb 102
    • Intel GWGA84
      Yup, this is the only thing I can think of. And something Indians seem to lack.
      Feb 10
    • Amazon pleH88
      Or being a bit home sick or lonely like any normal human being
      Feb 10
  • Juniper / Engsixpack
    Chinese companies are paying US salaries in China. That’s why.
    Feb 104
    • Microsoft expert123
      OP
      But don't they all make employees work super long hours? The pay per hour rate probably isn't that high, is it?
      Feb 10
    • Are you sure? I remember few years back the expected mid level salary in Beijing might be like 20k RMB a month. Maybe it's grown by multiples since then, but I'd find it hard to believe itd be in the coveted 150k+ USD a year range.
      Feb 10
    • Your information is so outdated, go on 脉脉(Chinese blind) to see the market rate now.
      Feb 10
    • Maimai is more like linkedin
      Feb 10
  • Junior level dev pay in China is still relatively low compared to US(but still higher than most countries), but mid-senior level positions are paid a premium in China, especially when you have overseas experience you will be upleveled(upwards of $700k in case of Alibaba for senior level ).
    Also startups are booming in China, case in point, bytedance valuation shot up 150x in 4 years, that company alone is minting several thousands millionaires in USD.
    The combination of both factors is why most Chinese students tend to work in US for a while first, usually 3-4 years until they get their green card, before considering going back. Just in case it doesn’t work out in China, they have the green card to fall back and return to US.
    Source: Chinese myself, leaving for China soon
    Feb 104
    • Microsoft expert123
      OP
      700K USD or Chinese yuan for Alibaba? But don't you get green card revoked if you stay outside of the US over 6 months?
      Feb 10
    • USD my man, 700k rmb is like 2-4 yoe local pay for first tier Chinese companies. 200k-500k rmb is expected for fresh grads for top Chinese companies now these days.

      Research “advance parole for green card”, basically you can stay outside of US for 5-8 years.
      Feb 10
    • Twitch CP0
      How does Mandarin proficiency factor into all this for a product leader? If I'm fluent in basic Chinese with no accent, but have very limited vocabulary outside of day to day conversational language, how would I fare?
      Feb 10
    • If i were you, I wouldn’t hold my hope high for positions focusing on domestic market. When Uber was fighting didi in China, our PMs(mostly native Chinese with oversea backgound) are visibly weaker.

      As a product leader, it’s more about culture than language, do you understand the culture of your customer base? Do you know what Chinese customers wants/spends their time and money on/their slangs and memes/what’s trending?/subtle Chinese culture elements that’s impacting UI and UX, etc etc.

      One silver lining though: You will be more valuable to Chinese companies that hope to explore oversea markets instead of domestic ones, e.g. tiktok
      Feb 10
  • Facebook YukonRiver
    Does tiktok pay more than fb?
    Feb 109
    • No if it’s the same level, e.g L4 to L4 comparison. However, Chinese expats are usually leveled up at least 2 levels when they return to China, so the deal is much sweeter.
      Also remember tiktok parent company, bytedance valuation shot up 150x in 4 years, a lowly fresh grad in China who joined 4 years ago definitely earns way more than you do right now.
      Feb 10
    • Oscar 🐨koala
      But don’t forget housing and living expense is often worse than Bay Area. Plus long working hours really can crush ppl.
      Feb 10
    • That’s true, the 996 work culture is the probably the biggest reason for most Chinese people who choose to stay in the US.
      Not arguing that, but I am just a single guy who doesn’t bother so much about WLB. I may move back to US after a few years when I have family since I’ve already had green card.
      Feb 10
    • Uber 666666
      @pager upleveling only happens when you cash out your US level to the first company you choose in China, changing job again in China or being laid off will throw you back to the reality.
      Feb 10
    • The worst reality is leetcode hard and be back to FANG in the US, I am ok with that. No risk no reward.
      Feb 10
    • Oscar 🐨koala
      Oh god leetcode!!!!!!!
      Feb 10
    • Yea baby leetcode is the common tongue of all devs around the world 🤷‍♂️

      Dont you know leetcode website is started by a Chinese guy? Maybe Malaysian or Singaporean Chinese
      Feb 10
    • Microsoft expert123
      OP
      @pager Understood. So go back to China to take a risk that potentially has high reward. The worst case scenario is coming back to FANG. Best of the luck!
      Feb 10
    • Uber 666666
      @expert123 why do you think he can be back easily considering current immigration atmosphere and US-China relationship?
      Feb 12
  • Microsoft / EngutWg87
    I think it's mainly the cultural difference. Living in the US can feel quite lonely, esp if you're used to the super densely populated cities of China
    Feb 103
    • New / Engleet4job
      ^ this!
      Feb 10
    • Microsoft Desitechie
      I thought that would be a good thing
      Feb 11
    • Microsoft Desitechie
      I thought that would be a good thing
      Feb 11
  • Google / Engtotoro36
    The china tech bubble in the last a few years really made some engineer think they are going to make more money by going back to China. But the party is almost over now, some people haven't realized that though.
    Feb 102
    • Facebook TapatioBum
      Will Chinese or Silicon Valley bubble burst first?
      Feb 10
    • Google / Engtotoro36
      I don't know. But I see silicon tech bubble just as a tech bubble but chinese tech bubble as part of a much bigger economy bubble China has.
      Feb 10
  • New / EngLatka
    Because they are patriots and want to help make China great again.
    Feb 100
  • Workday / Engefficient
    You go there for the culture mostly. If there’s no war, no tyranny (the western media has exaggerated issue way to far), and no natural disaster, you want to go back to where your cultures are. At least that’s what the Chinese tradition is. Also, the Chinese tech has been doing pretty good and in some cases dwarfed American tech due to scale and competition, I think even for personal skill set growth, if you can tolerate working 996 (which most Chinese can anyways), there shouldn’t be a second thought.
    Feb 105
    • New / EngPrometheuz
      What's 996?
      Feb 10
    • Microsoft expert123
      OP
      So it's more of Chinese culture? Financial wise, there is no incentive to go back to China since they pay/hour is lower in China and so is the quality of life. And why you get more personal skill set growth in Chinese tech companies?
      Feb 10
    • Workday / Engefficient
      9 to 9, 6 days a week
      Feb 10
    • Microsoft expert123
      OP
      12 hours a day and 6 days a week. That's 72 hours a week in China. The hourly rate gets diluted significantly even though the annual salary is the same. Why do people love working like that? And how does it help grow personal skill set?
      Feb 10
    • Workday / Engefficient
      Living in Bay Area, or high COL places may make people associate everything with money because that's what's on top of everyone's mind, but in reality, there's much more than just money. Using that desire pyramid (or formally, Maslow's hierarchy of needs), Safety is like the 2nd level from the bottom. Next level is love & belonging. Most Chinese people don't feel like they belong here in U.S.. Lack of Chinese food, lack of pretty Chinese girls / guys, lack of relatives, lack of friends they grew up with, lack of people who they can speak their native language to, feeling helpless when grandma grandpas back in China are in their senior year that needs care and much more.

      W.r.t. 996, most people learn on the job, not saying there aren't that many self-motivated people who spend weekend and evening studying, but it's not comparable to having the pressure of being out of business / out of job (if you can't scale and diversify fast enough than your competitors) behind your back and forces you to learn and grow. The pace of competition in China is at an order of magnitude higher than U.S.
      Feb 10
  • Microsoft / Designowo;
    Most people I know that are from China try very hard to stay here. I’ve noticed that the ones who were open minded about knowing what’s wrong with China tend to stay, and the others who’d rather turn a blind eye to the issues rather go back because of familiarity. (I am chinese)
    Feb 102
    • Microsoft / Designowo;
      Also if they didn’t get a good job here, it’s easier to get a job back in China if you’ve studied in America.
      Feb 10
    • Netflix enjoylyfe
      This!
      Feb 10
  • Quanergy Systems e6oc
    their flash drives are full
    Feb 100
  • Microsoft zzxxxvg
    Chinese massage here ain’t like home
    Feb 100
  • It’s also the glass ceiling here. And Indian managers. Chinese is having a hard time moving up the career ladder. They see average/incompetent Indian peers moving up and become their managers. Back in China, they move up rather quickly. No brainer
    Feb 104
    • Microsoft / R&Dmicrophone
      Are Harry Shum, Qi Lu from India? Gtfo
      Feb 10
    • F*ck you! Qi Lu should have gotten the MSFT CEO job. Not Satya! Satya was reporting to Lu.
      Feb 10
    • Facebook YukonRiver
      There is a post in Chinese to compare them. You can find it from LinkedIn.

      Mao used to report to Zhou enlai
      Feb 11
    • Mao and Zhou are both Chinese. Don’t meddle here.
      Feb 11
  • Chinese economy is growing up so fast. They can get comparable salary in their home country.

    And if you may account high cost of living in Bay Area plus being away from family, I think they prefer going back after gaining few years of exposure
    Feb 100
  • Apple apbob
    Someone mentioned that the housing prices in the major China cities is Bay Area prices - is that true? I never thought it would be inexpensive to live there and I figured the sky was the limit for the rich Chinese, but for normal tech dorks is it really San Francisco pricing for the same level of lifestyle?
    Feb 112
    • Workday / Engefficient
      in major Chinese cities renting is not an option if you want to send kids to public school. Part of reason why people want to buy instead of rent.
      Feb 11
    • SAP Sfhf75
      It is comparable per square footage. Homes in these Chinese big cities are all apartments
      Feb 11
  • Facebook public2
    China is great, air has been clean for some time. Pay is great and if you are rich the quality if life is great. I'm american.
    Feb 100
  • Google / EngSexyVirgin
    Not everyone is interested in assimilating to the American culture. Asian food is much better in China.
    All the major Chinatowns in the US I've been to are full of old people and look like they are stuck in the 80s. Its much more fun to for young Chinese people to live in China. The dating scene there is much better too.
    Feb 100
  • Uber bagpack
    Can't wait for most of them to leave!
    Feb 105
    • Microsoft expert123
      OP
      Why? Have you ever worked with any Chinese? Most of the Chinese people I've worked with are super smart.
      Feb 10
    • Uber bagpack
      I have worked with a lot. To the point where it’s actually overwhelming.
      Feb 10
    • Facebook YukonRiver
      Asian really needs more politicians in order not to be eliminated. Go for Kamila!
      Feb 10
    • Microsoft expert123
      OP
      What do you mean by overwhelming? Overwhelmed by what? They always speak Chinese to each other? I don't care as long as they speak English to me.
      Feb 10
    • Facebook YukonRiver
      He wants to get rid of most of them. I do think Chinese and Asian in general need to more involved in politics and military, for not being eliminated
      Feb 10
  • SendGrid girvssi
    could it be that the usa is not number 1 in the world? i know crazy right?
    Feb 103
    • Microsoft expert123
      OP
      The statistics shows US is still number 1 in tech industry so far.
      Feb 10
    • SendGrid girvssi
      who said anything about tech?
      Feb 10
    • Oracle l00tb0x
      Then why everyone wants to live there, or at least mimic them? Crazy, right?
      Feb 11
  • SAP Sfhf75
    Many go back to start a business. Many also go back when they’re here for a period of time and can’t find a wife. When you go back you are a hot commodity.
    Feb 102
    • Microsoft expert123
      OP
      How is that possible? There are disproportionately more men than women in China because of selective abortion. There are going to be loads of bachelor Chinese men left in China.
      Feb 10
    • Uber 666666
      @expert123 there are some but the portion of extra men can be considered negligible for a man with a US degree due to different social classes/city and country barrier
      Feb 10
  • New pyvtek
    A lot of it is over exaggerated western propaganda. I've asked my Chinese friends about all this and it's not nearly that bad.
    Feb 102
    • Microsoft expert123
      OP
      Aren't the food safety crisis and air pollution real? I believe even Chinese Government admitted the issue.
      Feb 10
    • Check China air quality index at www.aqicn.org , half of the country is at the same level or better than nearby countries like Korea,Japan, Thailand and India is way worse.
      The quality is also improving year over year, Beijing in particular has improved tremendously in last few years.
      Feb 10
  • Niantic FYfD57
    Cuz family bro. Family comes first for Asians.
    Feb 100
  • New IAmPepe
    They are taking back trade secrets.
    Feb 102
    • Facebook YukonRiver
      Maybe Qing dynasty is better? :)
      Feb 10
    • Intel kLpl72
      Restore the Ming. Abolish the Qing.
      Feb 10
  • Google iv3a8k
    $$$
    Feb 110
  • Amazon grx
    Jinyang is having good time copying American companies. Why not?
    Feb 100
  • General Motors / Eng
    RamenCup

    General MotorsEng

    PRE
    Boeing, Lockheed Martin, General Motors
    BIO
    Full stack developer with 6+ years of experience. I enjoy problem-solving, learning, and knowledge sharing.
    RamenCupmore
    If you get states degree, companies pay big money over in Asia.
    Feb 100
  • Oscar 🐨koala
    Mainly family and for salary. But it’s true the wlb there is so poor. You work 9-9 at least or PIPed.
    Feb 100
  • Amazon outoforder
    China is where things are happening!
    Feb 100

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