How to talk about the office in Chinese


The workplace is frequently one of the first environments you study when learning a new language. This setting is rife with specialized words and situations that call for particular phrases. The same holds for the Chinese. Knowing how to talk about the office in Chinese can be pretty helpful for businesses, exchange students, and expats. This article will provide guidance on how to discuss the position in Mandarin Chinese, encompassing key vocabulary, idioms, and cultural peculiarities.

Key Vocabulary

Here is a list of the most common words and phrases related to the office:

  1. 办公室 (Bàngōngshì) – Office
  2. 上班 (Shàngbān) – Go to work
  3. 下班 (Xiàbān) – Finish work
  4. 公司 (Gōngsī) – Company
  5. 部门 (Bùmén) – Department
  6. 职员 (Zhíyuán) – Staff
  7. 经理 (Jīnglǐ) – Manager
  8. 会议 (Huìyì) – Meeting
  9. 休息室 (Xiūxí shì) – Breakroom
  10. 工作 (Gōngzuò) – Work
  11. 电脑 (Diànnǎo) – Computer
  12. 桌子 (Zhuōzi) – Desk
  13. 椅子 (Yǐzi) – Chair
  14. 印表机 (Yìn biǎojī) – Printer
  15. 电话 (Diànhuà) – Telephone
  16. 文件 (Wénjiàn) – Document
  17. 合同 (Hétóng) – Contract
  18. 汇报 (Huìbào) – Report
  19. 老板 (Lǎobǎn) – Boss

Useful Phrases and Sentences

  1. 我在公司工作。(Wǒ zài gōngsī gōngzuò.) – I work at a company.
  2. 我们的会议是在什么时候?(Wǒmen de huìyì shì zài shénme shíhou?) – When is our meeting?
  3. 请把文件发给我。(Qǐng bǎ wénjiàn fā gěi wǒ.) – Please send me the document.
  4. 我们的老板很严格。(Wǒmen de lǎobǎn hěn yángé.) – Our boss is very strict.

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Cultural Nuances

Understanding Chinese working culture is just as crucial as mastering the language. 

Hierarchy and Respect: Seniority should be respected due to the typical hierarchical structure of Chinese businesses. Use your superior’s title and last name when addressing them.

Face-saving: Avoiding public embarrassment, or “saving face,” is crucial in Chinese culture. Never criticize or correct someone in public, particularly superiors.

Meeting etiquette: Punctuality is highly valued, and greeting the most senior person first is polite. When presenting a business card, use both hands and make sure the writing faces the recipient.

It takes more than memorizing words to learn how to talk about the office in Chinese; you also need to get a handle on grammar, tone, and cultural context. You’ll become more adept at navigating interactions in a Chinese workplace with regular practice. Understanding office-related language is a crucial advantage whether you want to work in China or are just trying to improve your language abilities.

Contact our head teacher Chen Huimin at if you want to learn Chinese or have additional questions about our Chinese programs. 

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