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Business Etiquettes in Czech Republic

Czechs are both formal and somewhat indirect in their communication. They try not to purposely offend and will often go out of their way to protect someone's feelings. Czechs are non-confrontational and often take an indirect approach to business dealings. If they lower their eyes and become silent they are uncomfortable with something you have said.

Business Meeting

Appointments are mandatory and should be made in advance. Letters should be addressed to the company rather than a specific person. This prevents a letter from being held up if the person it is addressed to is away from the office.

Do not try to schedule meetings on Friday afternoon as many Czechs leave for their country cottages after lunch. Many businesses close during August.

Punctuality for meetings is taken extremely seriously. Initial meetings are scheduled to get to know each other and to see if your Czech associates believe that you are trustworthy. The first meeting may be with a gatekeeper rather than the actual decision maker.

Expect some small talk and getting-to-know-you conversation before business is discussed. Maintain direct eye contact while speaking. Do not remove your suit jacket unless the highest-ranking Czech does so.

Presentations should be accurate, detailed and thorough. Have charts and figures to back up your claims.

Business Negotiation

It will take several meetings for your Czech business associates to become familiar with you and appear comfortable and friendly. Politeness prevents many Czechs from giving an absolute 'no'. However, statements such as 'It is difficult' or 'We will see' are often negatives.

Business is conducted slowly. You will have to be patient and not appear ruffled by the strict adherence to protocol.

Business is also hierarchical. Decision-making power is held at the top of the company. Decisions are reached slowly. It may take several visits to reach a decision. Avoid high-pressure tactics. Czechs generally offer what they expect to get and do not often give counter-offers.





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