Tips for International Business Etiquette

When your company achieves global status, you are going to have a lot of opportunities presented to you. In many cases, you will find yourself traveling to foreign countries to meet with other business leaders and arrange deals, form contractors or inspect overseas offices. When you visiting another nation, it is very important to take time to understand proper international business etiquette. Taking time to understand the importance of local customs is a surefire way to build strong relationships and always exhibit respect to places where you are just a visitor.

Greetings and Pleasantries

What is commonplace in your home country might not be so in a location on the other side of the world. In some countries, it is normal to bow when greeting a stranger for the first time. In other nations, the proper way to say hello is with a handshake. Some nations show a lot of physical contact with greetings while other cultures look at this closeness as inappropriate. Before you visit another country, you want to familiarize yourself with the correct greetings and appropriate pleasantries. This will help you avoid a snafu from the start.

Food and Culture

A vast majority of what you experience while visiting another nation for work purposes has nothing to do with your job. Still, international business etiquette will come into play in plenty of these circumstances. When a client invites you out to lunch in a country where the local cuisine is unfamiliar, you may worry that you will come across as disrespectful for not eating what you order. Take time to look into dishes that are popular in the nations that you will be visiting and, if possible, try to sample meals in advance from places in your home country.

Language Barriers

Finally, language can be a very tricky obstacle when you are traveling. While translators might be available to you while you are in meetings, you may find yourself struggling to take on basic tasks when you are left to your own devices. Before you set foot in another country, purchase an app or book that provides you with the words and phrases you absolutely need to know. Learning a new language may also be beneficial, especially if you will be doing a lot of business within a particular country.

To see success when you travel, be sure to familiarize yourself with the appropriate international business etiquette. Represent your company and your country with pride by understanding the right ways to go about interacting with the locals.

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