Florida Realtor April 2011 : Page 26

BUSINESS ETIQUETTE Middle East. The Japanese may be consistently 30 minutes late, yet they expect you to be on time. Waiting for them is the way you show respect. People from Latin America, Italy and Spain expect you to arrive late. • Smoking. Make known your smoking preferences. Smoking is more prevalent and accepted in coun-tries other than the United States. If you prefer that customers not smoke in your car or in your sellers’ house, say so. But if you’re a smoker, it’s best for you not to smoke in their presence. They may be offended by the smoke, but they probably won’t tell you out of courtesy. • transportation. Carefully plan transportation logistics. Because many foreign customers bring members of their extended family to showings, be sure to confirm travel plans in advance. Some expect to be driven to showings in a spotless, even luxurious car. • neighborhood. This goes without saying, but we’ll say it Basics of Global Business Norms Beyond using normal good manners, which you probably already do in the course of business, it’s important to project positive attitudes toward diver-sity, as well as adjust to the other person’s need for communication. Following are some basics for multicultural business norms and etiquette: • Learn at least a few phrases of the other’s language. • Show appreciation for the other’s customs, music and art; do not criticize. • Be sensitive and nonjudgmental on politics and religion; avoid dis-cussing these topics if possible. • Show good intentions and con-sideration. Follow up on promises. • Acknowledge mistakes and apologize when appropriate. • Recognize that you need to be more formal and take more time in doing business than is your normal practice. • Minimize talk about the United States. • Be punctual, even if punctuality is not custom-ary for the person you are visiting. Many cul-tures regard lateness as a character flaw, and if they do not, they know that an American would be in-sulted if another American were late. • Do not tell or make jokes; they have a high probability of being misunderstood. • Show deference to older people: stand when they enter; wait for them to speak or extend their hands in greeting. • Treat members of the opposite sex with respect. Err on the side of formality. • Be patient and forgiving if a member of the opposite sex has trouble determining how to treat you. Remember that other cultures differ regarding the roles of men and women in busi-ness relationships and that people from those cultures may have difficulty adjusting to expec-tations in the United States. • Respect the con-cept of “face.” Never do anything to embarrass another person, either in that person’s eyes, in the eyes of others or in your own eyes. Like-wise, do not sacrifice your own face in front of others. Excerpted from “At Home With Diversity®” and the “Global Real Estate: Local Markets” courses from the National Association of Realtors®. 26 FLORIDA REALTOR April 2011

Previous Page  Next Page

Publication List
Using a screen reader? Click Here