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Guide to Doing Business in Paris

Doing business in France is something that I know many of you are involved with, thus a look below at tips on business etiquette and business culture to help you succeed when doing business in Paris.

Give yourself plenty of time

Public transport will be your best friend the majority of the time but on other occasions may be your worst enemy. You should ensure that you give yourself extra time to arrive at engagements to account for delays or interruptions. Paris is a large city but it can take time to gte used to the Parisian system.

Language and Speaking French

Do not take it for granted that people will speak your language. The chances are that if someone has agreed to meet with you then they will speak English, but do not take it for granted and make an effort to speak French as much (or as little) as you can. Speaking even a few words of French can make a world of difference given that the French are very proud of their language.

Written agreements are essential

Traditionally in Paris, and in France in general, a deal that is written on paper is considered done, whereas a verbal agreement may not hold so much weight. Therefore, ensure that you have a written and signed proof of any of your key agreements.

Do not expect too much social engagement

There is less of a social aspect to professional relationships in Paris than you may be used to, so don’t be offended if you are not invited for a casual drink or for a game of golf. If you have been to Japan or South Korea for example, you will be aware that the host company have professional drinkers to entertain you all evening. Do not expect the same level of attention in France.

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