If you’re planning to offer your products or services to people and companies overseas, you have to prepare the ground well. Not only do you have to do a lot of research, but you also need to reconsider what you know about business meetings and how to close a deal. Namely, just like people and cultures differ around the world, so does the business etiquette. Failing to adhere to the rules and customs of another country can often lead to failure to strike a deal, which might have detrimental effects on the business results of your company. That’s why we have prepared the following tips and advice for you to consider before you make your big breakthrough overseas.
Know the market
To begin with, you need to research your target market well. The research should include details, such as local customs and norms related to business, typical business hours, ways in which people greet each other with respect, etc. Don’t forget to look into the issue of dress code, because what might be completely acceptable in one environment can easily be interpreted completely differently in another. If you don’t know where to start, grab a travel guide or talk to some friendly contacts you may have in the area. You don’t want to jeopardize the whole deal because of the things that not so strictly related to your offer.
Plan your arrival
The best option related to traveling is to make sure you arrive a day before an important meeting so that you have enough time to accommodate to the new environment and possibly find out more about the local culture or even the people you’re going to meet. This is especially true when traveling by plane to one of many business hubs that have become extremely popular over the years, such as New Zealand. So, make sure you get your tickets on time, that your accommodation is booked and that you have contacted an agency offering professional car rental in Queenstown in order to arrange transport from the airport. Finally, make sure you allow yourself enough time to reach the meeting place from your hotel and don’t forget to factor in possible traffic jams and rush hours. If possible, take the route the day before the meeting to check how much time you actually need to get to the place.
Language and etiquette
Chances are your meetings will be conducted in English, since it is still the leading language of business. However, you might realize that some people don’t speak the language fluently enough and that there might be some problems. Ideally, you should speak the language of your target market decently, but it is completely unrealistic that you can master a language in a very short time, which is why you might want to consider hiring an interpreter. Even though speaking the local language shows a great deal of enthusiasm and respect, it’s rarely a viable option, and having a professional interpreter with you is the best way to show that you are seriously interested in dealing with local clients.
Find proper accommodation
It’s vital that you get a good rest before an important meeting, which is why you’re supposed to find a place specialized in providing business accommodation. Such establishments often have meeting rooms and other amenities necessary for business travelers, which can come in handy in case you need to practice your presentation or check if the equipment is working properly.
Learn about the business culture
The way you’re going to present to your clients depends heavily on how well you understand how business culture works in your target market. While some cultures appreciate written forms of communication, others prefer the spoken word. That’s why you should really look into the ways business is conducted in your target market and adjust your typical behavior to meet the local expectations. Also, you should find out what kind of presentations people like. Should they be extensive and detailed or succinct? Should you bring any materials with you? What are going to be your key slides and words?
Don’t forget the basics
It’s easy to be overwhelmed with details about local customs to the point that you forget the general tips related to business meetings. However, you need to be aware that there are still some general rules and tips that apply in every country in the world. You should know what the point of the meeting is, who you’re meeting and what you want to achieve from the meeting. Only a combination of bearing in mind these things and adjusting your strategy to meet the local requirements can yield the results you want.
These are just some of the most important tips you should consider when preparing for traveling overseas for business. If you follow them and do your homework well, you’ll significantly increase your chances of achieving success, which is the ultimate goal of entering a market far from your home.
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