Doing business in Hungary

You should be friendly and open with your Hungarian business partners. Allow plenty of time for small talk as topics are not tackled head-on.

123rf.com/Mark Bowden

To make initial contact with Hungarian business partners, it is essential to telephone. Personal contact is much more appreciated than emails or neutral letters.

A personal visit will be even more welcome as it provides an opportunity to get to know each other better. Business matters are of secondary importance. Therefore, make sure to allow enough time when you visit.

Small Talk is important!

Hungarians do not separate their business from their private lives. Feel free to ask personal questions about their family, children or career. Of course, you must also be willing to provide some personal information. 

The better you manage to establish a friendly and open personal relationship with your Hungarian business partners, the smoother your negotiations and business will be later. 

A circular way

If you want to do business successfully in Hungary in the long term, you should refrain from marching straight towards your target.

Hungarians approach things in a circular way. Points are discussed and returned to later and perhaps even the next day in order to achieve the best possible result. 

In everyday professional life, this means that they do not stick to rigid structures, plans or agendas, but instead jump back and forth between issues. Flexibility is the name of the game! 

Speak freely

The additional time you will have to spend on communication can be saved when preparing a presentation. Hungarians place little value on elaborate PowerPoint presentations.

You will appear much more congenial and flexible if you speak freely and work with a flipchart. Drawings are a popular means of explaining facts.

All in all, when going to Hungary on business, become culture fit first to reach the best possible outcome!

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