The difference in culture
How to deal with a different culture
Doing business with a different culture can be an eye opening event but it can also frustrate you in many ways.
The first thing you need to do is get yourself familiar with the culture in your destination country. I know this sounds like easy advice but it is not. How many times when you met with somebody from a different country you really got yourself familiar with their culture. Or when was the last time you went on a holiday and googled what culture they have? In normal life or when you go on holiday getting to know this can be handy. When doing business it’s a must!
It starts when you first contact people, even by email. Always stay reserved if you don’t know who you are dealing with. Nowadays, in some countries, I see a really open and friendly way of emailing. But be aware, don’t do this in some Asian countries where hierarchy and respect are a part of daily life. Be really polite and keep from making jokes or other smart remarks. And for some countries, like Japan, the real business is never done by phone or email. It’s done in person after establishing trust.
When meeting people in real life. Know what to do and respect the culture they have. In some Asian countries try to bow with your head or even with your upper body. For us western people it feels weird. For some Asian countries it is normal and if we do it they will respect you for doing it because you showed interest in their culture.
Even if you don’t agree with their way of doing things, adjust yourself and discover it is so much easier doing business if you understand your business partner. And it goes two ways. Showing you have an interest in their culture shows you mean business.
As you can see, understanding culture can make your business life much easier. Let Inconnect help you to get the best out of your contacts with new business partners. We can explain and research what is the best way to contact people in other countries. And how to behave when you meet people in real life. It will save you money and time.