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Business norms

24 February, 2015 - 17:30

The norms of conducting business also vary from one country to the next. Here are several examples of foreign business behavior that differ from US business behavior:

  • In France, wholesalers do not like to promote products. They are mainly interested in supplying retailers with the products they need.
  • In Russia, plans of any kind must be approved by a seemingly endless string of committees. As a result, business negotiations may take years.
  • South Americans like to talk business "nose to nose". This desire for close physical proximity causes American business people to back away from the constantly forward-moving South Americans.
  • In Japan, businesspeople have mastered the tactic of silence in negotiations. Americans are not prepared for this, and they panic because they think something has gone wrong. The result is that Americans become impatient, push for a closure, and often make business concessions they later regret.

These norms are reflected in the difficulty of introducing the Web into Europe (see the next Integrated Marketing box).