Conducting Business in Italy

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History, beauty, cultural achievements are words that come to mind when Italy enters the mind. Italians take great pride in their culture, it infuses every aspect of their daily lives. As an American business man or woman in order to conduct business effectively and respectfully in an Italian society it is imperative that there is a complete understanding of this culture. The following elements of society must be researched and understood by an American preparing for an international business venture to this amazing country: •Social customs

•Family life
•Housing, clothing, and food
•Class structure
•Political patterns
•Economic institutions
•Value systems
American business people will need knowledge of the Italian culture to successfully break the Italian business market and be successful. Social Customs
The Italian culture holds strong to the business people and it is vital their culture is respected and followed when conducting business. The close family ties of the Italians flows directly into the business world, favoring individual responsibility which influences an Italian's preference to do business with people they are already familiar with ("An Italian Culture Overview" n.d.). There are differences in greetings, introductions, expressing appreciation, and closeness that are very different from North American culture; for American business people to be successful they must make the adjustments.

Greetings. Handshakes are the most common greeting among men and women in social and business situations ("An Italian Culture Overview" n.d.). The American business person should not be surprised by a strong grasp of the arm during an initial handshake. When entering a room the American business person should shake hands with everyone in the room. American's should be confident and greet the Italian's with a strong hand shake and a gesture of familiarity.

Introductions. In Italian culture during both business...
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