Did you know that Australia is tied for the first place with the United States among countries with most casual business etiquettes?
Yup, Australia is one of the most informal places in the world. Australian Business Etiquettes demand a healthy dose of common sense more than any thing else!
Australian businessmen consider brevity an admirable trait! Many people have talked themselves out of a good deal in Australia. So, Australian business Etiquette number 1: Keep It Short!
Bragging is the most hated habit in Australia. So if you have a long list of accolades, accomplishments and qualifications, keep ‘em to yourself! A person’s business acumen is usually judged by good eye contact and a firm, short handshake. If meeting with women, wait for them to extend their hands first.
In spite of their famously laid back culture; Australians take their business very seriously. Punctuality is crucial and directness is appreciated during negotiations. Australians don’t like pressure tactics.
Although English is the most common language, it has been localized so much that many visiting native English speakers don’t know what everyone’s talking about! Following Australian business Etiquettes means you respect the differences and not try your hand at Strine (Australian English) saying G’day, mate and Grouse shiela! It is more likely to result in offense than anything else!
So, just be yourself. Australian like their sports and it is the safest topic. So, read up on Australian sports and games before you go.
Australian Business Etiquettes demand that gift- giving not happen during business. But if invited to dinner at home, a small gift of fine wine and chocolates is considered appropriate. Gifts are opened as soon as they are presented.
Dress conservatively, mind your manners, and ask when you don’t understand anything and your Australian counterparts will definitely be impressed (without showing it, of course)!
Following these guidelines will make you first visit “down under” a breeze!
Photo: Nations Illustrated