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“Kiss, Bow, or Shake Hands” Terri Morrison and Wayne Conaway.

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Presentation on theme: "“Kiss, Bow, or Shake Hands” Terri Morrison and Wayne Conaway."— Presentation transcript:

1 “Kiss, Bow, or Shake Hands” Terri Morrison and Wayne Conaway

2  No one needs to know you, trust you, or even see you in the U.S. to consider doing business with you. Many purchases are made remotely.  Americans value speed. Purchasing decisions are often made in the first visit.  The United States is a youth oriented culture.

3  English is the official language  At the time of this book publishing(2006), there were 231 different languages spoken in the United States! The United States is very multi-cultural.

4  Punctuality is highly emphasized. If you are delayed, you should let your appointment know.  If you are invited for a business meal, you should arrive promptly. If you are invited to a cocktail party, you can arrive up to ½ hour late without calling.

5  Business is done at lightning speed in comparison to other cultures.  Electronic communication is very common and you will see many executives communicating via handheld device (phone or Blackberry)  Business cards are exchanged when there will be later communication.

6  Business meetings are often held over lunch.  The standard lunch break in the United States is one hour, but business lunches may last up to two hours.  If you are invited out for a business meal, the host will be the one who pays.  It is highly discouraged to drink alcohol at a business lunch.

7  In business situations a handshake is used. It should be very firm and only last for a few seconds. Both men and women shake hands.  The greeting “How are you?” is not an inquiry about your health. The best response is a short one such as “Fine, thanks.”  Americans often wave, smile, and nod in greeting in casual situations.

8  When you meet someone for the first time, use their title and their last name until you are told to do otherwise.  Always stand when you are introduced to someone unless you are physically unable to do so.  Americans are a casual society and you may be asked almost immediately to call someone by a first name.

9  Proper etiquette says that you should wait to be introduced by a third party.  However, it is very common and not at all impolite in the United States to introduce yourself.  Americans perceive direct eye contact when speaking to someone to be a sign of attention and sincerity.

10  Business gifts are often discouraged by the law and many companies have policies against accepting gifts above a certain dollar amount.  Corporate gifts are exchanged around Christmas.  If you are invited to a business dinner in a home, a gift or wine or flowers should be brought.

11  Business attire can span from conservative to business casual.  In rural areas and small towns, expect that the business attire may be more casual than in a big city.  When visiting an office where you do not know the dress code, it is better to dress more formally rather than more casually.

12  Never address a woman in a business setting with “honey” or “dear”, although these terms are common in the South.  It is not impolite in the United States to begin a conversation with “What do you do?” People in the United States define themselves by their professions.  Do not inquire about a person’s race, religion, political views, or marital status.

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