It’s not just Indians who are careful before packing their bags for Australia. Australians, too, are enrolling for etiquette classes to learn of sure-fire ways to impress Indians.
Praise Sachin to the hilt, avoid discussions on Slumdog Millionaire and ignore all possible holdups like ringing phone while in a business conversation: these among others are some of the tips by Melbourne-based consultant Stephen Manallack, who has trained many Australian corporates wishing to do business with Indian companies.
The trainer believes knowing the culture of the people one does business with can be helpful, and even more so when the country is dependent on export income from education and resources. Appreciating the cultural differences can turn the table.
“While relationship is important in Australia, it is central in India,” he says. “Australian business leaders find that building business links is more time consuming in India, where you need to double check to ensure you have the fullest picture — then be prepared for surprises as you implement. The ability to change and be flexible about an otherwise “set-in-concrete” programme is highly respected in India,” says Manallack.
Indians and Australians also view ‘Time’ differently, according to Manallack. He also prepares his clients for long meetings with many distractions like signing files, letters and frequent interruptions.