A lot of money goes into meetings and travel incentives that take place abroad. As such, it is important that all of these activities go smoothly and that the results you are looking to get from them are favorable and all to your liking.

To make sure that your international meetings and incentive travel plans go smoothly and end successfully, here are some useful tips you can follow:

Know the proper greeting and handshakes – There is one business rule that is true anywhere in the world: First impressions count. This is the main reason why it is crucial to learn how to meet your colleagues with the greeting or handshake that is considered proper or acceptable in their country. Make sure you read up on and practice the appropriate greeting and handshake before you travel.

Dress formally for all your meetings – Make sure you bring your best suits and ties along for all your meetings abroad. Showing up to a meeting dressed informally or casually may be taken as a sign of disrespect to your hosts. Even if the people you are set to meet are dressed in business casual attire, it is always best to err on the right side of caution.

Use the formal title of the person you will meet with – You should always call the person you will meet with by his or her title and last name, unless you are specifically invited to use his or her first name. You should practicethis during your first and subsequent meetings.

Be familiar with your host's attitude toward time – Punctuality is very important in the USA and in other parts of the world, but this isn't true of every country you may visit. While you will find your Japanese, German or English counterparts putting a similar value on being on time, you may find yourself cooling your heels for a good half hour if you arrive on time for a meeting in Spain. Although it is always a good idea for you to be on time since you are the guest, don't take it as an insult or a slight on your honor if you have to wait for a while.

Use your hosts' language or the local language with caution – Finally, it is always a thoughtful idea to learn about your hosts’ native language and use this to converse with them. However, unless you are already fluent, this may lead to some awkward misunderstandings or miscommunications. If the person you will meet with does not speak English or the same language as you do, let askilled interpreter handle the majority of the communication.

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