Business etiquette and cross cultural communication


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A summary lecture on business etiquette and cross cultural communication for business communication subject at a polytechnic.

Business etiquette and cross cultural communication

  1. 1. BusinessEtiquette andCross CulturalCommunicationSherrie Lee
  2. 2. Dark-coloured suitsLight-coloured shirts/blouses Well-groomed hair and nails Covered shoesMinimal accessories and scent Business Attire
  3. 3. Meeting and Greeting Introductions done in order of age or statusGeneral rule is to defer to authority and use an honorific Mr., Mrs., or Dr., unless asked to use first names Firm handshake with direct eye contact
  4. 4. Business cardsRepresent you and company so use good quality cards Present card printed side up, forward-facing, with both hands Generally exchanged at the beginning or the end of initial meeting Study business card, commenting / clarifying before putting it away You should not request a business card from a more senior ranking person
  5. 5. Discuss and present at least three statements on each topic. (15 min)Group 1: Gift giving; small talkGroup 2: Entertaining in restaurants and homesGroup 3: Different styles in verbal and non-verbal communication; thank-you lettersGroup 4: Negotiation & decision making; telephone etiquette Group Work
  6. 6. Gift Giving Choose good quality gifts Company logo (if any) should be discreetStatus of recipient is reflected in choice and value of gift Gifts are usually not opened when received Be aware of inauspicious colours (e.g. black, white) and religious restrictions (e.g. alcohol)
  7. 7. Small Talk Not about business Helps to establish connection with the other party Topics to avoid: politics, religion, personal issues Safe topics: weather, transportation, sports, surroundingsStay positive/neutral and follow the other party’s lead if from a different culture
  8. 8. Entertaining Common venues include restaurants, private clubs, sporting events, cocktail parties and home Host is responsible for seeing to guests’ comfort Host initiates starting meals, small talk and business discussions (if any)Hosts need to be aware of drinking practices and taboos of guests Guests should be punctual, be thankful, and exercise good manners
  9. 9. Communication Issues Direct style: low-context, individualistic culture / verbal precision, self-expression Indirect style: high-context, group culture / Face-saving, social/group harmonyNon-verbal: gesture, posture, facial expression, space Body language can enhance spoken message
  10. 10. Negotiation & Decision Making Know your priorities and alternatives well Understand the other party’s negotiation style Leave margin for bargaining process Meaning of ‘truth’ varies among culturesUnderstand different values attached to time and decision making among cultures
  11. 11. Thank-you letters Send promptly In response to gifts, hospitality, special favours, etc.Well-written letters express appreciation and also how useful and helpful a gift / service has been
  12. 12. Telephone Etiquette Placing a call: Prepare, identity yourself, speak clearlyReceiving a call: be prompt, give name/dept, be discreet Ending a call: the one who place the call should end it Phone manners: YOUR EXAMPLES Voice mail: give brief but specific message; include name and number
  13. 13. BUSINESS ETIQUETTE & CROSS CULTURAL COMMUNICATION Quiz timeTake the quiz from the San Diego State University Student Affairs, Career Office -Flickr: Crossett Library Bennington College