Properly welcoming a visitor or a client is an art that when adequately managed, puts you in your partners’ good books, increases his perception of you, and can help tilt negotiations towards you.
The 21st century has democratized business worldwide so that trans international business is now the norm, not the exception as was the case some decades ago.
Your business partners might be from a region of the world different from what you’re used to and confusion might arise from conflicting cultures; hence the reason for proper communication etiquette. Adequate communication etiquette can save you from all this misunderstanding in a business meeting, casual settings, and meet and greets.
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Sort out their itineraries
You should start with the airport to curate your client’s experience in your city. Picking the client up personally is always preferred, but you can also send a chauffeur to pick the client up.
Also, your client is new to your city so he/she might rely much on you to pick out the best hotels and eating places.
Take them to see the city
If your client or partner is coming to visit you in your country, you must have fun and exciting events planned out for him.
Whether it’s a great eating place or tourist attractions in your city ( if you live in France which has lots of them, that’s a plus), if there is a concert holding that same day, then take them to it; nothing loosens up visitor’s tensions than vibing to a great song.
This is another rule that you must bear in mind when. Reciprocity can save your reputation in very uncertain conditions. A business manager tells the story of meeting his Japanese partner and being puzzled when the partner kept bowing throughout the evening. The rule is that when in an uncertain situation, reciprocate whatever your business partner does. If you get a kiss on the cheek, then give one, the bow also whenever you are bowed to, and you’ll save yourself a lot of confusion.
Surprise them with knowledge of their culture
Learn a bit about your client’s culture to give them a pleasant view of you. You know the old saying “the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach”? well it doesn’t work for only wives. If you order your client’s favourite cuisine for him and make small talk about other things related to hum, then you bet you will make a hell of an impression on him.
Put off Business for Later
Talking business with your visiting client who just got off some hours long air travel is considered bad practice. You can talk about other families, sports, or anything else your client is familiar with, apart from business. The English mostly prefer to make small talk about the weather to get acquainted while others might have other notions of what might appear as small talk. Make small talk with the client right from when you pick him up (but don’t overdo it, travelling long hours might put him in a glum mode). You can resume business talk later the next day when you get to your workplace to enable your client to meet & greet VIP people.