What makes an international professional shine? Education? Experience? Nicely polished shoes? Yes, they all count towards your professional success. However, there is something else that is often overlooked by professionals, yet often expected in the high-powered business world. Give up?
It’s skills in international business etiquette.
A False Image of ‘Etiquette’
Most likely, you have honed in on the word ‘etiquette’ and dismissed the necessity for you to ever learn such a skill. Perhaps you think it’s too old-fashioned or too pretentious, or only for ‘ladies’ and ‘gentlemen’. Certainly not for you, the powerful professional that you are (or aspire to be).
There is More to Etiquette Than You Think
If you think that international business etiquette is not necessary for you, can you answer ALL of the following?
How do you introduce an American client correctly?
Are you familiar with the French handshake?
Do you know where to put a business card in Japan?
The Power of Etiquette
Etiquette gives you the power and presence to know what to do in international business situations just like these. What is considered polite or professional in one culture may be considered impolite or unprofessional in another.
First impressions, introductions, table manners, business card exchange and even correspondence are all situations where you, an international business professional, can shine.
When you conduct yourself with ease and confidence in these business situations and across cultures, you impress. You set yourself apart from the competition as an internationally minded professional with poise and cultural intelligence.
If you are still not convinced about the power of etiquette, then I will leave you with one last thought: People will probably not notice if you use the correct fork at the dinner table, but they certainly will notice if you pour water in their wine glass!
Stay tuned for more.