The world of business knows no boundaries and successful people are a nation of their own. However, while this sounds good on paper, people who often travel abroad find it to be less than true. Even in the globalized culture of the 21st century, traveling half way across the globe never comes easy and those who are not prepared for it often fall into a deadly trap. By not knowing the local customs, you risk offending your hosts. By not planning your trip well enough, you may waste a lot of time and so on and so forth. In order to get a maximum success out of your foreign business trip, you need to prepare adequately. Here are some tips and tricks.
Learning about Local Culture
Being unprepared is one of the greatest dangers which such an occasion brings; subsequently we deliberately choose not to get acquainted with the local culture. While in your home country a handshake or even a kiss on the cheek may be considered as nothing but a pleasantry, in some cultures this kind of intimacy is considered as something way over the line. That is why you need to always be aware of the things like this. Sure, some may forgive you this kind of transgression on account of being a foreigner, but acting accordingly to these rules will always impress your hosts. Even if they don’t show it openly.
Inquire About Table Manners
Most business trips usually include a business dinner or two and knowing the table manners is the key to leaving a good impression here. Unfortunately, customs in some places in the world may be completely opposite from what is considered to be a good taste in your country. For example, in Japan, slurping noisily while eating noodle is looked favorably upon, since it means that you are enjoying your meal. In the countries of the western hemisphere, on the other hand, this kind of behavior is considered impolite. Same goes for burping and arriving late to your dinner invitation.
Plan Your Trip
Another thing you need to be warned about is that, when you arrive at your target destination, it is vital that you have your entire schedule planned up front. The failure to do so may result in a loss of time you won’t be able to make up for later. Take, for example, a situation where you have to get to the appointment two hours after you land. In such circumstances, you simply cannot afford to go around the place for an hour looking for where you could eat or go to the restroom. Use platforms like Yelp to learn of the local businesses and plan your itinerary down to the last checkpoint.
Find a Way to Promote Your Business
The key to a successful marketing campaign lies in shameless self-promotion. You never know where you may found a potential client so make sure to always have at least some promotional material at your hands. Giving out promotional mugs, pens or even t-shirts with the logo of your company may be a smart business move. This is why you must always leave some room in your baggage for these items. Remember, this is still a business trip and what better way is there to spend it than by promoting your business internationally.
As you can see, getting ready for a foreign business trip is a serious issue and it should be approached this way. Careful preparation and doing a thorough homework on the country of your host are just some of the things you need to do. Naturally, if you are returning to the country you already visited, your job would be much simpler, but it never hurts to put some additional effort for maximum effect. Your business is worth it.