In a world that is filled with so many cultures and traditions it can be a struggle to keep up with local customs. While some mistakes can be mildly embarrassing, what appear like some minor errors could actually cause significant offence to others and jepordise a proposed business deal or relationship.
- Researching and understanding the manners of the country you are travelling to is important for business, highlights new bleisure travel app Jack and Ferdi;
- Even the most educated could fall foul of cultural differences and it is hard to know them all and following who does what;
- Jack and Ferdi has collated a list of five reasons why researching the traditions and manners of the country you are travelling to is important.
Even the most educated could fall foul of cultural differences. As new bleisure mobile app, Jack and Ferdi, highlights, it is hard to know them all and following who does what. “In France, even though not speaking French is completely OK, you are expected to apologise before engaging further conversations. Meanwhile in Tokyo, the way you treat your business card is a reflection of how you’ll treat your relationship with your Japanese colleague: business cards should be handed with both hands, face up,” it explains.
Jack and Ferdi, which provides business business travellers “the opportunity to seize the full potential of their trips by offering geolocaliced, AI-generated and curator-vetted suggestions,” has collated a list of five reasons why researching the traditions and manners of the country you are travelling to is important.
- Being prepared makes your trip better – there is nothing worse than not knowing what to do and how to act when arriving in a new country. Whether you are traveling for work or not, being prepared will get you out of many situations. Googling can be cumbersome and quite time consuming. We all know it’s not what you want to do before a trip. But you’ll have to figure out a way to know the country you are visiting. It can be anything: a few phrases, how to say hello, simple greeting manners or even how to dress. Your experience will be easier if you don’t have to handle the awkward stares of the locals.
- Start your meetings right – we all know that phrase saying that the first impression is always the most important one. During a business trip and when you meet either potential clients or future colleagues, you want to make a good first impression and start the meeting on the right foot. Learning about the way to interact, sit or even hand your business card is a way to be not only respectful but also to impress the person facing you. The way you move and interact might be completely different to how other countries do, be prepared and put all the odds on your side!
- Show respect and get some in return – respect is something that goes both ways. If bowing is a custom in the country you are travelling to, then don’t necessarily expect a handshake. Following local manners is a sign of respect and will put you in a favourable position for the meeting you are starting. The person facing you will be more inclined to discussion and opened to negotiation!
- Learn more about the country and its history – this sounds very simple and obvious but making a simple research can open a few doors about the country’s history and where those manners come from. You can discover way more and understand the culture, the way people interact and why they interact that way. It can be a question of religion or simply a ruled tradition that is anchored in the country’s history. This is also an excellent ice breaker for a first meeting! Did you know that in South America, it is recommended to know the star player of the national soccer team just for that reason?
- Don’t make a fool of yourself – whether you are in a business situation or simply travelling for your own pleasure, it’s never enjoyable to look or even sound like an idiot when facing someone. You are representing your company and country. Yet, knowing in advance local manners and overall traditions of the city or country you are travelling to can prevent you from leaning in for a kiss when the person is handing you their hand for a firm handshake or simple to go for a handshake when the person you are facing is going for a respectful bow.
It’s always awkward to arrive somewhere and not knowing what to do. In conclusion Jack and Ferdi says “simply anticipate any possible problems, do your research and be prepared.” As it explains: “You’ll have such a better experience if everyone is respectful and respected.”