INTERNATIONAL TRADE 4
HELPING COMPANIES EXPLOIT OVERSEAS TRADE OPPORTUNITIES
Meeting and Greeting. Greetings are casual. A handshake, a smile, and a 'hello'
Trade mission to
Switzerland in March A top level trade mission is being organised for next year to Switzerland, home of the United Nations. The mission will visit Geneva, home of the Red
Cross and various organisations that come under the auspices of the UN, including the World Health Organisation and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). All these organisations place orders for a vast and wide ranging amount of supplies each year – anything from telecoms equipment to tyres, and vaccines to sanitation supplies. The organisations also require various
services, from education and training to freight forwarding and transport services.
‘UN procurement is suitable for small and larger companies’
Companies interested in providing these goods and services will find the briefings and advice available from the trade mission to be invaluable in helping them secure contracts. The trip takes place between 21 and 23 March 2012. Eleanor Baha, trade attaché from UK Trade
and Investment at the British Embassy in Geneva, will be available for one-to-one meetings with companies and will give advice on how to supply goods and services to the UN.
For more information, contact Mark Sankey on 0121 450 4205 or email m.sa
1 DOING BUSINESS IN…
are all that is needed – but ‘yo’ and the person’s name will suffice. In most situations, you can begin calling people by their first names. And most people will insist that you call them by their nickname, if they have one.
ne of the good things about doing business in America is that most people speak English – well,
an approximation of it anyway. If you accept that when you ask the concierge to put your baggage in the boot, and he looks at you quizzically (it’s the ‘trunk’ to them) then you’ll be OK. Actually, English is spoken by about 82 per
cent of the population – Spanish is the next most popular language.
Top tips for doing business in USA:
Informal and Friendly. Don’t be surprised if strangers start to talk to you –
it’s just how they are. Some visitors can be surprised when people are so informal to the point of being very direct.
in the West are known for being a bit more casual. Executives usually dress formally regardless of which part of the country they are in. Casual Friday is common in many companies. High technology companies often wear casual clothes every day. For an initial meeting, dressing conservatively is always in good taste.
Time is Money. Probably the second most used phrase in the States after ‘have
a nice day’. People 'save' time and 'spend' time as if it were money in the bank. Americans ascribe personality characteristics and values based on how people use time – so, people who are on-time are considered to be good, reliable people.
Business Dress. In general, people in the East dress more formally, while people
Communication Styles. Americans are direct. They value logic and linear thinking
and expect people to speak clearly and in a straightforward manner. To them if you don’t ‘tell it how it is’ you simply waste time, and time is money. Americans will use the phone to conduct business that would require a face- to-face meeting in most other countries. They do not insist upon seeing or getting to know the people with whom they do business.
is conducted rapidly. Expect little small talk before getting down to business. It is common to attempt to reach an oral agreement at the first meeting. The emphasis is on getting a contract signed rather than building relations.
accomplishments, initiative and success, and may, or may not, share those sources of pride with their elders. So if they reach for their wallet, it doesn’t mean they are going to pay the bill, just show you a picture of their gal.
Dining Etiquette. Table manners are more relaxed in the US and you can refuse
specific foods or drinks without offering an explanation. Food is often served family-style, which means that it is in large serving dishes and passed around the table for everyone to serve themselves. Do not begin eating until the hostess starts or says to begin.
For more advice on doing business in the US, visit www.babcmidlands.org.uk
The next issue of Chamberlink will look at doing business with China.
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Contact Gareth Jones on 01922 457686 firstname.lastname@example.org
In-Comm Business and Training Services
Vigo Place, Aldridge WS9 8UG In-Comm is committed to Equality and Diversity
Individualism. Individualism is prized, and people are proud of their individual
Business Meetings. Be punctual. With the emphasis on controlling time, business
28 CHAMBERLINK DECEMBER/JANUARY 2011/12
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