Creating successful and long lasting international relationships requires you to do your homework about the culture of the country you want to do business in. Ideally, you would need to visit the country where you intend to do business and acquire a basic understanding of the common etiquette rules in that country.
The first thing you should know about Americans, is that they work to their own agenda, which is usually in a hurried fashion, with great pressure to get things done on time and to produce results. Trying to introduce chitchats, skip around a subject and failure to arrive at a decision are all considered a waste of an American’s precious time. Respecting this is therefore very important.
If you want to have a stable relationship with Americans, you should try hard in order to impress them:
1 Great team-worker
Many American companies vastly employ the use of teamwork. This is because working in teams fits well with the notion that everybody is equal, and yet individual, provided each team member receives recognition for their achievements. When working in a team, you should be open, accessible and social. Being quick and delivering the requested task in time is very important, because “time is money” as they say.
2 Building trust
You should demonstrate integrity and produce good results at all times and by doing this you will quickly be able to build trust with Americans. Say what you’re going to do, and then do it. Achievements are important, although it is bad form to be too boastful. On top of this, appearing honest and direct, projecting a confident image (using eye contact, an erect posture, a firm handshake etc.), speaking articulately and not being afraid to express an opinion will definitely help you in your quest in America.
3 Make a good impression
You’ll make a good impression in the USA by appearing confident, open, friendly and direct. A firm handshake, sustained eye contact, a clear exposition of your opinions and an alert posture will show that you’re interested and capable, although ultimately, you will more than likely be judged on the results you can deliver.
4 Communication style
The style of communication in the United States tends to be very explicit. Value is placed on being clear, direct, and ‘to the point’ regarding verbal and written communication. It is not always necessary to follow certain protocols. And the ideas of an individual are valued, regardless of whether that individual has seniority in the group.
Because Americans tend to be fact-orientated, it is important to be very factual when communicating with them. Citing noted authorities or relying upon solid data can be more persuasive than passionate arguments based upon emotion, although putting a bit of feeling into your argument does help – Americans appreciate a good performance.
To conclude, you should be very persuasive with your arguments, because Americans are fact-oriented. And because openness and directness are qualities valued in America, stand up straight, look someone straight in the eye and smile if you want to be trusted. Focus on being decisive and getting things done quickly. Finally, demonstrate a can-do attitude; and be punctual and straightforward in your communication.
If you want to find out more about building relationship across cultures read this article: