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New Zealand

New Zealand

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Published by Manik Singhal

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Published by: Manik Singhal on Apr 11, 2012
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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The business culture in New Zealand conforms to a typically British model – being formal, reserved, and conservative.

However, New Zealand's corporate culture distinguishes itself from the metropole with its characteristically South Pacific warmth and friendliness, creating a relaxed, yet professional atmosphere in which rewarding personal relationships may be developed among business associates. The general approach to management in New Zealand is hierarchical, with decisions being made by senior-level executives – though ideas, input and collaboration, from all members of the organisation, are also highly valued in the New Zealand workplace. Business etiquette in New Zealand will be familiar to those who've worked in western corporate environments before. Use titles, until instructed not to do so, and maintain eye contact when speaking to your associates. New Zealand businessmen tend to favour forthrightness, honesty and hard work over showiness, self-aggrandisement and empty promises – they will be far more interested in what you actually do, than what you merely say you can do.

When raising an idea or responding to someone else's, present your point directly, and back it up with facts and figures. While a relaxed, human-orientated atmosphere is prized in the New Zealand workplace, business decisions remain unemotional, and motivated by the business' best interests.

Business meetings should be scheduled at least a week in advance, and then confirmed a few days before they are due to take place. Be punctual, as lateness can be seen as a sign of unreliability, or even indifference. If at all possible, avoid scheduling meetings in December and January – this is holiday time in New Zealand, and many people will be on leave.

Expats should expect a little idle chit-chat before getting down to 'the agenda' at business meetings – sport is a massively popular topic of conversation, and you'll probably want to keep one or two complimentary things to say about the All Blacks (New Zealand's national rugby team) up your sleeve, for good measure!

There is no specific protocol for the exchanging of business cards in New Zealand, though it is typically done when meeting a potential associate for the first time. A really nice touch, if meeting with someone from a non-European background, would be to get one side of your card translated into te reo Māori.

The dress code for business in New Zealand is difficult to pin down, though you should always appear well-groomed and presentable. For a first meeting, men should stick to a dark suit, worn with a tie; and women, should wear a smart dress/business suit/pant suit, and limited accessories. Some

by getting on with it and working hard DON'T .30am (or 9am) to 5pm. and maybe the inter-tribal battles.make unfavourable comparisons between New Zealand and its neighbour. Monday to Friday.get involved in 'team-building' exercises. but there is a lot more to Maori culture than this! For a start. chocolates or flowers to say thanks Gender equality: Women are treated as equals in the New Zealand workplace.30pm on Saturdays Dress: Variable. but usually. often rising to senior corporate positions Do's and don'ts of doing business in New Zealand DO . these are taken quite seriously in New Zealand DON'T . Most people have watched the All Blacks do the haka before a rugby match. smart and formal dress is worn (especially to meetings) Gifts: Gifts are not usually exchanged during business meetings. History buffs can visit an ancient pa (fortified village) site to learn about the traditional Maori way of life. be sure to take along some wine. from 8. Fast facts Business language: English Hours of business: Generally.try to prove your credentials by talking about them – rather. Australia – this is a sore point for many Kiwis DO. yet willing to develop personal relationships with your colleagues DO . however.. it's one of the things which makes New Zealand unique. After all. and 9am to 12. You could also witness some .. get a taste of te ao Māori (the Māori world). show your worth to your New Zealand employers.be polite and reserved.industries in New Zealand will exhibit a very relaxed dress code – it is not terribly unusual to see a Kiwi businessman wearing jeans and a sports jacket to the office on some days. if you are invited to a colleague's home. you can learn 'kia ora' (hello) and 'ka pai' (good): two Māori phrases that you may hear used in New Zealand English. or the land wars between the colonisers and Māori.

chocolate. and give gifts such as flowers. The first two are offensive partly because they are unhygenic (you eat off tables). Do open your gift upon receipt. who share historic. too! . liquor. eating there would be somewhat akin to munching away in a church. Do not touch the head and hair of others. or skirts and blouses for women. which are particularly taboo or sacred. Besides. and learn more about the Māori world view. a welcome ceremony for visitors on a marae (communal meeting place). don't put your hat on a table. near every wharenui.. or a book about your home country. especially of a chief. Do understand that the word “kiwi” is not an offensive name when referring to New Zealanders.. and also because of the Māori notion of tapu (sacred). Red is the taboo color in New Zealand. Dark suits with a conservative tie and white shirt for men. there are plenty of options: tours with local guides. nor to make promises which you can’t keep or make exaggerated claims. there's a wharekai (kitchen/dining room). dresses. Do dress conservatively and formally for business occasions. Suits. to touch a man’s head is a gross insult. Do not be late for an appointment. mythical and other cultural information. so you could enjoy a concert of action songs and poi dances. If you'd like to get out into nature. sit on tables. and the third because the wharenui is an extremely important area in the marae. and don't eat or drink if you are inside a wharenui (meeting house). They will call themselves kiwis. Another important thing to remember is that the Māori culture has its own etiquette: DON'T.of the enduring traditions and enjoy some famous Māori hospitality by taking part in a pōwhiri. The Māori culture also comprises a strong tradition of performing arts (kapa haka). Wear casual attire for informal occasions. So. Do not wrap your gifts in red.

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