Doing Business In Great Britain
Great Britain consists of England, Scotland and Wales, while Northern Ireland is only part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. Despite distinctive cultural differences with regards to the mentality of its inhabitants, one can speak of a shared British business culture.
The refined “English manner” is famous around the world and synonymous primarily with respectful and reserved behaviour. Included in this is an unlimited politeness in every situation.
Emotional outbursts of any kind are deemed embarrassing and compromising. Everyone who has received a reasonably good education knows how to retain his composure.
British Small Talk
British culture also demands the creation of a pleasant atmosphere at all times. Thus, the British are masters of small talk. Their skill at having an animated conversation even about something very trivial is particularly remarkable.
Since no business meeting can pass without having non-committal conversations, foreign business partners should definitely practise a little small talk. The aim is to establish a good overall mood, agreement and a personal relationship, before you get on to more challenging business topics.
It is also crucial for foreign business partners to listen carefully. Britons show only limited reactions if they don’t agree with something and will not further explain their rejection.
They will, on the one hand, directly express their views with regards to a suggestion that has been made, but on the other hand, they will do so in a rather calm and subtle manner. Before they agree to an offer, the British tend to take a lot of time to weigh all of the presented arguments.
Understating, Not Proving Yourself
Another art that the British master very well is confident understatement: No one emphasises his position or professional know-how. Britons don’t demonstrate the effort that was necessary to achieve results. The motto is: you either are truly great or you are not.
In day-to-day business, you thus have to be able to listen carefully: if an Englishman, for example, knows something better than his colleagues or business partners, he will in all modesty only subtly make a few remarks regarding his doubts during a discussion. No more.
So be culturally smart when travelling to Great Britain and get it right! A longterm business relationship with humerous, witty business partners will be your greatest reward!
Business Culture Guide - Great Britain
eLearning Great Britain
The British often aim to keep their options open, because they value flexibility and freedom in business. Our Country Course Great Britain will teach you all essential intercultural aspects for a successful collaboration with your British business partners, colleagues and clients.
This eLearning course includes:
- 90 min efficient and comprehensive eLearning
- Engaging media components for interactive learning
Online Coaching Great Britain
Do you have a specific question in mind? Are you going to work and live in Great Britain? Our coaches are highly qualified experts in their field with many years of work experience in different business sectors.
From managing British teams to sealing a deal with British business partners to relocating to Great Britain as an expatriate – whatever situation you need to deal with, your personal coach will be there to guide you through it!