General

The average language competence level of Italians is below EU standard

Usually the first contact with an Italian business partner should be formal

You should send an e mail, make a phone call or send a fax or  letter

Recently, Italian companies have been using Social Media, like LinkedIn in order to promote their businesses

Final decisions are centralised and taken by the persons positioned in the upper levels of the pyramid

Employees have a great respect for their bosses

If you only have a general reference for  the company you wish to approach, your phone call should be addressed to a secretary

If you don’t speak Italian, you should indicate this clearly

Often, Italian businessmen do not speak English and they are prepared, to use the services of a professional translator

Your business partner will appreciate your cultural sensitivity

Italians give importance to visual appearances, and are accustomed to very high quality clothing and accessories

Accept your partner’s invitations for lunch or dinner as a way to develop your relationship and to gain trust

Be sure that a reciprocal climate of trust, is established between you and your business partner.

Be prepared for extensive discussion before final decisions are reached

Lot of contacts have also been initiated throughout linkedin

Consider that after the first contact, Italians like to do business on a face-to-face basis, rather than by phone, fax or e-mail

Be prepared to answer all sorts of questions

Italians enjoy talking, discussing topics of interest and are full of creative ideas

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