This, inevitably, is creating a new set of pressures for companies in Hong Kong and the mainland. They are finding themselves at the sharp end, often having to deal with unrealistic expectations at home and overseas, as employees and international partners somehow assume that the downturn has had only minimal impact.
"These are confusing times for business leaders," says Christine Raynaud, chief executive of recruitment specialist The MRI China Group. "China demand is still seen as the panacea for Asian and Western multinationals, but within the mainland, the view is much more cautious."
To illustrate, Raynaud refers to findings from the firm's annual talent environment index. For this, more than 5,500 mid- to senior-l