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Austria is home to one of Europe's top opera houses and has been called the
historic musical capital of the Western world. It still basks in the glory of Beethoven,
Schubert, Mozart and Strauss. Vienna was also the home of Sigmund Freud.

Situated at the heart of the European continent, it is a junction for communication
with European trade and cultural centers.

The country has a high GDP and standard of living in addition to a well-developed
social market economy. Its location at the geographical heart of Europe on the
Danube River trade route gives it strategic importance.

Culture Overview

Cultural Essentials

Given the historical significance of the Roman Catholic Church, Austrian
culture remains relatively hierarchical. When an Austrian meets someone,
s/he attempts to figure out where that person fits within in the social
hierarchy, since this determines how the person should be treated. In the
workplace, hierarchy is seen in strong leaders who do not seek consensus
before reaching a decision. Decision makers are not autocratic; they are
polite and courteous toward their subordinates.

Decision making power is clearly delineated, generally by signing authority
or outlined in the job description. Subordinates are expected to ask their
managers for advice in situations that are not clearly defined in the rules of

Austrians, especially Baby Boomers, remain conservative and traditional,
preferring prudent and moderate behavior. They address each other by
their academic, professional or honorific title and their surname. In the
workplace, Austrians refer to colleagues by their surname, although this is
less prominent among Generation X and Y employees. In the German
language, there are both formal and informal forms of the word "you".
Austrians generally prefer the formal form (Sie) for everyone except family,
close friends, and children. This makes sense given their reliance on
hierarchy. 8.2.2017.

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Austrians strive to appear well dressed at all times. There is an unwritten
standard of conservative clothing when going to a concert or the theatre.
Most Austrian women dress up elegantly to go shopping. This behavior is
less pronounced among Gen X and Y.

First impressions are important. Austrians judge others, and place them in
the social hierarchy, based on their clothing and demeanor.

Direct Communication
Austrians are direct but polite communicators. Most are somewhat
reserved when first meeting someone, although they warm up as a
relationship develops. Lack of directness from others may be interpreted as
lack of clear thinking or even dishonesty. Austrians prefer a frank, concise
mode of expression, although they strive to sound polite. If you are an
indirect communicator who relies on non-verbal language to augment your
message, you may have some difficulty with the brevity of the Austrian
speech pattern.

In the workplace, Austrians do not engage in personal discussions,
preferring to focus on business. This can make it difficult to get to know
colleagues as individuals.

When writing about a deadline, it is important to be specific. Saying
something to the effect, "we would appreciate receiving this by …" may
easily be interpreted as an estimate. To make the point, it is better to write,
"We need this information by …".

Controlled Time
Austria has a controlled-time culture, although the absolute level may vary
across the country. People in the western provinces take a more controlled
view of time than do those in the eastern provinces, which includes Vienna.

In the workplace, meeting deadlines and schedules is expected.
Businesspeople generally plan their business day so that they meet agreed
upon deadlines. At the same time, Austrians value their free time and will
not necessarily work late in order to meet an unrealistic deadline. This is
not to say that they will not work additional hours should there be a crisis,
but such hours will not be part of their traditional working behavior. In fact,
they tend to view people who frequently work additional hours as

Impact of Generation Y on the Austrian Workplace
Traditionally, Austrian culture had deep-rooted traditions and behavioral
norms. In business, punctuality and hierarchy were respected;
relationships between managers and staff were defined by their positions,
which in turn delineated their roles and responsibilities.

Generation Y appreciates the leadership and skill focus that define the
Austrian workforce; however, they are motivated differently from previous
generations. They want close relationships with their colleagues and
bosses, a fun place to work and a blending of their social and personal
lives. 8.2.2017.

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Generation Y expect to make friends at work, which is a marked shift from
previous generations. In addition, they want to be able to discuss their
personal problems with their boss, something unthinkable in previous
generations. This blurring of the lines between work and play may
ultimately change the closed-door managerial policies.


As a result of the Hapsburg influence, the majority of the population is
Roman Catholic. As in many Western European countries, the influence of
religion on people’s daily lives has decreased since World War II. Austrian
Sunday church attendance is down, although many people still take part in
religious celebrations of rites of passage such as baptism, confirmation,
weddings, and funerals.

The church fulfills a social function in many smaller communities, which
explains the larger proportion of practicing Catholics in provinces with
strong agricultural traditions such as Tyrol, Vorarlberg, and Burgenland.
Religious affiliation of all types is lower in urban areas. Vienna has the
lowest percentage of any Austrian province.

Church members are taxed a percentage of their income to support the
church. Despite the growing secularism, many public holidays follow the
Christian calendar.

Aside from of the ban on Sunday shopping, which is presently under
debate, there is no other significant impact of religion on business protocol.
However, it would be wise to avoid scheduling meetings around the
Christmas and Easter holiday season.

Role of Women

Although there has been a plethora of legislation declaring equality
between the sexes, most Austrians believe in a traditional role of woman
as the primary homemaker even if they work outside the home.

Since 2009, legislation has provided for equality in the workplace. Lack of
affordable child care facilities is a major reason that women leave the
workforce when they start a family. This forces many to accept part-time
work. The more educated the woman, the greater her chances of being

There are examples of powerful women in politics, education, finance and
business. Women and men are equally represented in universities and
women comprise half the workforce. Even in business, women are treated 8.2.2017.

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with old world courtesy by men. Older Austrian businessmen may kiss a
woman’s hand rather than shaking it.

Political leadership remains a male domain. Gender parity in political
decision-making positions is a lofty goal. Less than 30% of the National
Council are women and less than 40% of the roles in federal government
are filled by women.

About 12% of seats on the executive boards of Austrian companies are
held by women and about 16% of the seats on supervisory boards. In
general, women hold more leadership positions in the public sector than in
private industry.

In response to the idea of placing quotas on women on company boards as
a way to focus attention and action on gender equality, Austria has
instituted two quotas for state-owned companies. The goal for year-end
2013 was 25% with an increase to 35% by 2018. There are no sanctions
for companies that do not achieve these levels. Some major Austrian
companies have voluntarily set quotas for their companies.

View of Foreign Women
Austrians will generally accept a foreign businesswoman if she has the
qualifications and credentials required for her position. Status and
hierarchy are respected, regardless of a person’s gender.

Visiting businesswomen will usually be treated with the same respect as
male colleagues, although they will also be treated extremely courteously.

Tips for Businesswomen
A businesswoman is expected to offer her hand to an Austrian
businessman during the greeting process.

First impressions are lasting impressions. A businesswoman is expected to
dress conservatively, in clothes that reflect her position. Business dress is
somewhat more formal than in many other countries.

Since this is a culture that respects status and hierarchy, presenting
yourself as sincere and confident creates a good impression.

Austrians tend to be private people who do not discuss personal matters in
business. Therefore, it is a good idea not to ask personal questions or relay
too much information about yourself.

Austrians are not expressive communicators. If you are from a more
demonstrative culture, you may wish to moderate your hand movements.

Establishing Credibility
Austrians have a politely formal demeanor in public. Therefore, a
businesswoman should avoid public displays of affection, anger or
emotion. She should also avoid a loud voice, extravagant compliments or
inappropriate dress, which would garner undue negative attention.

Introductions are important. How you are introduced and the level of the 8.2.2017.

. To avoid this. even introverted. Austria approved legislation that reduced immigration requirements for people residing outside the EU. Several international organizations. It is important that a foreign businesswoman have decision making authority. This will allow the government to supplement the ageing workforce and to fill gaps in specific sectors such as research. Foreign businesspeople are generally http://kpmg. View of Foreigners At one time Austria was a vast empire that traded with many countries. The country has taken in a large number of refugees from conflicts around the world. have a higher-ranking person in your company make the initial introduction. lead the business discussion when you are part of a team. Whenever possible. have a higher-ranking person in your company send a letter outlining your title. Even if all team members are equal. this visible taking charge enhances your credibility. The immigrant population doubled during the 1990s as a result of Austria’s open-door policy. culture where tradition plays an important part in their way of life.2. If this is not possible. make certain that your business card prominently displays your title. Although such third-party introductions are not mandatory. 8. being introduced by someone known to the person with whom you will be meeting opens the door more easily.. Austria has remained a closed. responsibilities. try to weave the information into your conversation without seeming to boast. In many companies there is still a tendency to defer to the men on a team. are headquartered in Vienna.culturewizard.PrintView Page 5 of 45 person doing the introduction lays the foundation for the way you are perceived professionally. In spite of that.. it is a good idea to arrange with your team to have certain questions deferred to you or arrange the seating so you are in a position of authority. Austria’s central European location made it a meeting place for the east- west conflict during the Cold War as well as a transit point for immigrants from eastern countries. engineering and specialized management. and background. it could tarnish her professional image.2017. If you have attended a prestigious university or have received any professional honor. Since titles and professional achievements are important in this hierarchical culture. In 2011. Businesswomen should expect a bit of old-world courtesy and gracious good manners towards them from Austrian businessmen. including the United Nations and If she says that she must contact someone else for approval. If at all possible.aspx.

• Do not expect employees to display individual initiative. explicit directions regarding duties.. Cultural Model. and decisions. • Be aware that people expect to be treated differently based on their socio-economic backgrounds or levels in the organization. so when interacting with people from Austria. Formal vs.2.culturewizard. Cross Culture Tips The following cultural observations are based on the dimensions in the ICAM169. you need to approach every situation with an understanding of the basic tenets of a given culture and yet remain alert to the specific cultural signals you receive in each situation and adjust your behavior and expectations accordingly.aspx. but in order to describe cultural traits. They are designed to help you work and understand people from other cultural backgrounds. 8. deadlines. Hierarchical The defining characteristics of this dimension are: • How society is structured • How power is allocated or earned • Tolerance for social mobility • How organizations are structured and run • The amount of responsibility and control employees are given Austria is hierarchical. • As a manager.. you should remember the following tips: • You will need to give clear. we had to make generalizations. they expect to take direction from the leader. through language and behavior. • Show the appropriate level of deference and respect. . you will be expected to demonstrate an authoritative leadership Informal The defining characteristics of this dimension are: http://kpmg. to the more senior members of society. Perhaps the most important tip we can provide is that when interacting across cultures. Egalitarian vs. which may not apply in some cases.PrintView Page 6 of 45 treated with utmost respect and courtesy. Please keep in mind that not all people from any given culture act the same. • Expect to encounter more bureaucracy in organizations and government agencies.

.culturewizard. Do not move to first-name basis until invited. building relationships and entertaining Austria is a formal society. • Check with a colleague or local national about rules of protocol and etiquette about specific circumstances since being correct with etiquette is important. teamwork in accomplishing and rewarding business goals • The roles and responsibilities of individuals to other family members • The appropriate levels of self-assertion and self-promotion within a society Austria is group-oriented culture.2017. When you interact with people from Austria: • Address people by their appropriate title and surnames and honorifics • The appropriateness of discussing personal matters at work • Appropriate ways of meeting people.2. Group vs. • Status is important and you may be judged on the image you present. • They may be uncomfortable if too much focus is placed on them individually.aspx. 8. then as an individual. Individual The defining characteristics of this dimension are: • The source of an individual's identity and loyalties • The relative importance of the individual versus the group • Whether legal systems will protect the rights of the individual or focus on the group as a whole • Whether individuals prefer to work alone or be part of a group • Whether work teams operate as a seamless entity or as cooperating individuals • The value of individual contributions vs. http://kpmg. • Do not ask personal questions in a social setting unless you have developed a close relationship with someone. people will consult with others before stating their opinion. it is best to use the formal tense when using the local language. • In general.. Check to be certain it is proper to use social functions to network. The following will help you when you interact with people from Austria: • People value their role as a team member and identify themselves first as part of a group. the clothes you wear and where you live and what car you drive.PrintView Page 7 of 45 • The importance of appearance and demeanor as an indicator of status • The importance of protocol and etiquette • The appropriate use of titles.. These external cues matter to locals. • In general.

the expectation is they will last a long time. once established.PrintView Page 8 of 45 • Individuals are not generally comfortable taking credit for their accomplishments. Indirect The defining characteristics of this dimension are: • The relative importance of verbal vs. Interpersonal vs.. they carry an underlying assumption of friendship.2017. Once a decision is reached. • Promotions tend to be based on seniority and relationships rather than performance. non-verbal communication • The degree of directness or subtlety in the language • The relative importance of contextual versus tactical information in conveying a message • The need to maintain harmony and dignity when communicating • The degree to which a society uses conciseness and clarity versus eloquent language when communicating http://kpmg. . • While relationships may take longer to build. or professional and personal lives Austria is a relatively interpersonal.aspx. and take awhile to establish. Direct vs. which may include going out after work to socialize. entertaining at one’s home or even inviting someone for the weekend and while these may be seen as casual in your culture..2. implementation may be quite rapid. speed and the reputation of a competitor. • Be prepared at social or business functions to be asked some questions that might seem somewhat personal in nature so your colleagues and acquaintances may get to know you better. you will want to remember these points: • The process of relationship building may be more formal and • In some business situations. Transactional Relationships The defining characteristics of this dimension are: • What constitutes a relationship • What are the expectations • Whether trust is deemed critical to building social or business relationships • What takes precedence in making a business decision: the people involved or other more objective business criteria • The pace and degree of formalized rituals in building new relationships • The appropriateness of mixing business and pleasure.culturewizard. When you have business or social interactions with the Austrians. • Decision making may be a slow process since consensus is important. • Individuals feel a strong sense of responsibility for family members. 8. • There are expectations that people have of relationship-based behavior. personal relationship may take precedence over price. preferring the praise to be given to the entire group. relationship-oriented culture.

you will be judged on your words rather than your non- verbal behavior. • Participants in a meeting may take turns speaking or they may speak over the other person if they believe they understood the message. • Because they structure their time. • Since they value their time. longer term planning • The feasibility / appropriateness of assigning set times for social functions or business meetings to start and finish Austria is a Controlled Time society. the goal is to continue the conversation to a logical conclusion.. This is especially true in criticism or feedback. • In general.2. Internal Control The defining characteristics of this dimension are: • The degree to which people feel they control their environment and destiny-or the degree to which they feel their environment and destiny control them • Openness to change and innovation • The preference for rules and structure • Willingness to take risks • The degree to which organizational practices encourage and reward initiative and risk taking. Fluid vs. people tend to see those who are not prompt as disorganized or even unprofessional. it is important to schedule visits in advance. and allow failure http://kpmg. .aspx. • Meetings and social events may have a scheduled starting and ending time.2017.. In general. • Brevity is appreciated in all kinds of communications. • Do not be surprised if people offer direct praise. meeting deadlines shows good management. The following tips will give you clues about how you may best interact with Austrian colleagues around time issues: • Most people consider time to be something that is within their control and they may have difficulties when outside forces interrupt their schedules. Controlled Time The defining characteristics of this dimension are: • The degree to which people feel that they can control time • The relative importance of relationships vs. schedules • Attitudes towards timekeeping and punctuality • Comfort level with short range vs.PrintView Page 9 of 45 Austria is a direct communication culture. 8. even in a public forum such as a meeting or presentation. • Time management skills are valued. The following tips will give you clues about how you might handle communication with Austrian colleagues: • It is important to stand by your word when you make a commitment. External vs.

Slovenes in Carinthia and Croats in Burgenland. • People can gain status and respect by workplace accomplishments. Status The defining characteristics of this dimension are: • The importance and value attached to professional vs. . personal lives • How status and success are defined by a society • The presence or absence of government-sponsored initiatives relating to family welfare benefits • The source of an individual's identity and self-esteem • Tolerance for blurring the lines between professional and personal lives Austria is a Moderate Balance-Status Motivation culture. it is a good idea to make periodic checks on progress. When interacting with people from Austria. Their rights as well as those of the Croats are protected by law and generally Only two significant minority groups exist -. • Employees expect managers to be strong leaders who care for their staff and take a personal interest in their lives. 92% are native German speakers. status and sense of personal accomplishment are often derived from family.. you should remember the following tips: • Personal identity. • Employees may see a distinction between work time and personal time although they may also blur those lines with friends and family. • Risk tolerance is often a matter of position. • Social occasions may be used to achieve business objectives. • When delegating work to employees.culturewizard. Balance vs. The Slovenes form a closely-knit community. with risk tolerance limited to those in decision making positions. • Obligations to family and close friends are often viewed as important as professional responsibilities. people from Austria may be reluctant to adopt new products or systems without a great deal of research.2.aspx. When interacting with people from Austria. Country Overview The People Austrians are a homogeneous people. 8. • Younger workers may expect to be measured on their own achievements.PrintView Page 10 of 45 Austria is a moderately External Control society.2017.. • Although change may be viewed in a positive light. education and pursuits outside of the workplace. you should remember the following tips: • People in these societies believe they have limited control over their destiny or environment.

3%. former Yugoslavs 4% (includes Croatians. and Bosniaks). .9%.) Population growth rate: 0. About 74% of all Austrians are Roman Catholic. Tyrol. The people of each of these regions have a unique culture. Many of the world’s most important http://kpmg.aspx. Nationality: Noun: Austrian(s) Adjective: Austrian Population: 8..2%. Orthodox 2. Styria. streams. Slovenes. Salzburg. other (includes Slovene.) Languages: German (official nationwide) 88. unspecified 2% (2001 est. The vast majority of Austria's creeks. Serbs.8% (includes Roman Catholic other or unspecified 2. Upper Austria. and Vorarlberg).02% (2013 est. 8. The church abstains from political activity. Vienna.3% (2001 census) Source: The World Factbook Cities & Regions Austria marks the eastern boundary of the Alps.711. Catinthia. Lower Austria. The remaining mountainous third is geologically distinct -.) Ethnic groups: Austrians 91.8% (includes other Christian). Turkish 2. Austria is a federal republic divided into 9 provinces (Burgenland. it is full of tradition yet has a forward-looking approach. Turks 1. Protestant 4. Austria is graced with many freshwater lakes that are beautiful and draw sports enthusiasts to their shores.2017.4% (2001 census) Religions: Catholic 73. and Hungarian. none 12%. The Danube runs west to east across the Vienna basin.2.2%).PrintView Page 11 of 45 respected in practice. Vienna’s role as the seat of the Hapsburg Empire for centuries is seen in the wealth of architecture and in the city’s artistic and musical heritage. Austria's greatest defining feature is the Danube. After its mountains. and rivers empty into the Danube. German 0.culturewizard. other 0.part of the ancient granite mass of the Bohemian massif.6%. official in Carinthia. Muslim 4. Vienna is a unique blend of historic and modern.6%. other Catholic . Serbian 2.6%.9%.2%.. official in Burgenland) 5. which cover about two- thirds of the country's surface.6%.2%.1%. Croatian (official in Burgenland) 1.770 (July 2016 est.

Over 4. judicial review of legislative acts by the Constitutional Court Source: The World Factbook More Government Information Chiefs of State and Cabinet Members in Austria https://www. Vienna is also known for its famous music Salzburg is the birthplace of Mozart.. including Beethoven and Mozart. have lived and performed behind Vienna’s Baroque façades.aspx.. Every summer the world famous Salzburg Festival offers opera. . 17 September 1156 (Duchy of Austria founded).culturewizard. 8. It is also the setting for the American musical. Government Country name: • Conventional long form: Republic of Austria • Conventional short form: Austria • Local long form: Republik Oesterreich • Local short form: Oesterreich Government type: Federal parliamentary republic Capital: Vienna Independence: 12 November 1918 (republic proclaimed). 11 August 1804 (Austrian Empire proclaimed) Legal system: Civil law system. there are excellent examples of Art Nouveau architecture.PrintView Page 12 of 45 composers. notable earlier dates: 976 (Margravate of Austria established). Vienna is a city where music never stops. making Salzburg a world capital of culture. drama and concerts on the highest artistic An online directory of leaders updated weekly by the Central Intelligence Agency.000 music and theatre events in different genres are held in the Festival city throughout an average year. Background Note: Austria http://kpmg. With its distinct musical heritage.2017. It is known for its scenic lakes and mountains that received their name from the salt trade.2. In addition to this Baroque splendor. Sound of Music.cia.

Currently.gksoft. the unemployment rate would be even higher. Austria's 5. is closely tied to other EU economies. metals.7%.1%. food. Early signs point towards a slight improvement in 2016. political and economic uncertainties caused by the European sovereign debt crisis. US 6.2. with its well-developed market economy. the budget deficit stands at 2. such as unexpectedly weak world economic growth threatening the export market. 8. driven by low interest rates on government debt. Slovakia 4. Although Austria's fiscal position compares favorably with other euro-zone countries. vehicles and parts. but highly developed agricultural sector.4%. paper and paperboard.state. is at its highest rate since the end of World War II. skilled labor force.2017.4%. driven by an increased number of refugees and EU migrants entering the labor market.PrintView Page 13 of 45 http://www. it faces several external risks. and high standard of living. tourism Exports .culturewizard. and a small. the current refugee crisis. Switzerland A comprehensive directory of Austrian government web sites Economy Currency: Euro (EUR) Economy . repercussions from the Hypo Alpe Adria bank collapse. . while low by European standards. approaching 0. France 4.7% of GDP and public debt has reached a post-war high of 84..9% in 2015. Its economy features a large service sector. Department of State.S.overview: An overview of government and political conditions published by the U.2% (2015) Source: The World Factbook http://kpmg. Germany 29. communications equipment.4%.2% of the GDP. and continued unrest in Russia/Ukraine. lumber and wood processing. chemicals. especially Germany's. a relatively sound industrial sector. Without extensive vocational training programs and generous early retirement..8% unemployment rate.aspx. Links to Government Web Sites http://www. Italy 6. Austrian banks' continued exposure to Central and Eastern Europe. Economic growth has been relatively weak in recent years. Industries: Construction.

com/DesktopModules/RW3Modules/CP2014/PrintView.871 sq km Land: 82.445 sq km Water: 1.PrintView Page 14 of 45 More Economic Information Ministry of Finance http://www.culturewizard. Switzerland 158 km Coastline: 0 km (landlocked) Climate: Temperate.bmf. cloudy. air pollution results from emissions by coal.524 km Border countries: Czech Republic 402 km. Hungary 321 km. avalanches. continental. Slovakia 105 km. 8. earthquakes Environment . Italy 404 km.. moderate summers with occasional showers Terrain: Mostly mountains (Alps) in the west and south.aspx.and oil-fired power stations and industrial plants and from trucks transiting Austria between northern and southern Europe Geography . north of Italy and Slovenia Area: Total: Financial information provided by the Austrian government. cold winters with frequent rain and some snow in lowlands and snow in mountains.current issues: Some forest degradation caused by air and soil pollution. mostly flat or gently sloping along the eastern and northern margins Elevation extremes: Lowest point: Neusiedler See 115 m Highest point: Grossglockner 3. Liechtenstein 34 km. Germany 801 km.798 m Natural hazards: Landslides. Slovenia 299 km.2.note: Landlocked.. strategic location at the crossroads of central Europe with http://kpmg. .2017. soil pollution results from the use of agricultural chemicals.426 sq km Land boundaries: Total: 2.gv. Geography & Climate Location: Central Europe.

who was childless. This was compounded by the plague. Metternich regained many lost possessions at the Congress of Vienna. During his 10-year reign. major river is the Danube. became emperor. which devastated Vienna in 1683. a group of students and workers protested. weakening Austria. Franz I declared Austria to be empire rather than an archduchy and named himself emperor. http://kpmg. Under Babenberg population is concentrated on eastern lowlands because of steep slopes. • On March 13. the Hapsburgs increased their empire through marriage. married Napoleon in 1810. • In 1720. Franz Joseph I was named emperor. Maria Theresa became empress in 1740. 1848. 8. forcing Metternich’s flight to England. Following Napoleon’s defeat at Waterloo. Austria lost Lombardy in 1859. In 1804 Napoleon crowned himself Emperor of France.. • Rudolph of Hapsburg became the leader of the Austrian territories in 1273. She led reforms including compulsory general education and building a central administrative government.PrintView Page 15 of 45 many easily traversable Alpine passes and valleys. Marie Louise. and low temperatures elsewhere Source: The World Factbook History Overview • Leopold I of Babenberg launched a dynasty in 976. The Turks were eventually defeated and relinquished control of Hungary and Croatia to Austria. Ferdinand. • The Thirty Years’ War raged from 1618 to 1648. Charles granted Spain and its territories to his son. with Vienna the second most important city in the empire. which lasted until 1745.aspx. He established Vienna as one of the premier cities in Europe. thus beginning the War of the Austrian Succession. died in a battle against the Magyars. Austria became one of the richest duchies in the Holy Roman Empire. Austria lost dominance among the German states and ceded Venice to Italy. It was during this period that the Austrian Empire began to fall apart.2017. he abolished serfdom and granted religious freedom. In 1556 Emperor Charles V abdicated and his brother. . • Josef II succeeded his mother in 1780. seized Vienna.2. Under his rule Vienna again became one of the finest European cities.. • France declared war on Austria and most of Europe in 1792. launching the second dynastic reign of Austria. thereby splitting the Hapsburg empire into two branches. During the 15th and 16th centuries. seeing an opportunity. After the Austro- Prussian War of 1866.culturewizard. Franz’s daughter. poor soils. Franz was forced to give up his crown as Holy Roman Emperor when Napoleon consolidated his own power. The dynasty ended in 1246 when Duke Friedrich II. Pragmatic Sanction allowed the Hapsburg empire to pass to a female heir. The Turks. Philip II.

• The most restrictive European asylum laws were enacted in October 2003. Shortly thereafter. Crown Prince Franz Ferdinand and his wife were assassinated in Sarajevo. Austrians voted to keep compulsory military service. Austria ceased to exist and the region became known as Ostmark. Country Information Embassies History http://kpmg. a province of the German Reich. Austria joined with Italy and Germany to form the Triple Alliance. Karl I abdicated. Austria withdrew troops from the Golan Heights in June 2013 after nearly 40 years of monitoring a UN buffer zone between Israel and Syria. He then held a plebiscite on April 10th and the Anschluss (annexation of Austria) was approved. • Austria joined the EU in 1995. Hungary and Austria split and Austria became a republic. • The Allies liberated Austria in 1945 and the Second Republic was established. • In a January 2013 referendum. 1914. • Amid Syria’s civil war. • In 2003.aspx..culturewizard. • On June 28. Austria declared war on Serbia. 8. In 1882. • Hitler invaded Austria in 1938.2017. Austria became independent again in 1955 when occupation troops were withdrawn.2. Austria lost the war and at the end.. . The Emperor of Austria was crowned King of Hungary. a coalition government was formed between the People’s Party and the Freedom Party. in 1918.PrintView Page 16 of 45 • The Austro-Hungarian dual monarchy was established in 1867 with Emperor Franz Josef and Queen starting World War I.

In general. http://kpmg. Titles are very important and denote respect. Gift Giving In general. starting with the right check.2017. Smiling while shaking hands may help build the relationship.. Austrians exchange gifts with family and close friends at Christmas (generally Christmas Eve) and birthdays. wait for your hostess to introduce you to a group. Austrians are great believers in third-party introductions. Once a close relationship develops. .. but men do not kiss other men. Do not adopt the informal until invited to do so. firm handshake is the traditional ask someone you know to introduce you. Maintain eye contact during the greeting and repeat your surname. may kiss a woman's hand.culturewizard. shake hands with everyone individually. Gifts need not be expensive. 8. they should reflect the interests of the recipient. however. women may kiss each other once on each check. A quick. Use a person's title and their surname until invited to use their first name. particularly those who are older.PrintView Page 17 of 45 Public Holidays Tourist Information Social Etiquette Meeting People Greetings are formal. If your host is unavailable.aspx. Women may also kiss men. When entering a room. Some Austrians also celebrate their name day (birth date of the saint after whom they are named). including children. Some Austrian men. (This invitation may never come). A man from another country should not kiss an Austrian woman's hand. It is important to use the formal version of you ("sie") until invited to move to the more informal "du".

hairdressers. even numbers mean bad luck. watch what others are doing and emulate their behavior. and building superintendents at Christmas. http://kpmg. Dinner parties are usually over by 11:00 or 11:30 p. Meals are generally preceded by drinks and appetizers.aspx. or pastries to the hostess and a bottle of wine to the host. • Gifts should be nicely flowers. bring a box of good quality chocolates. 8. coffee houses. • Dress conservatively and elegantly. • Do not give red carnations. a bottle of wine. expect to continue conversations over coffee and brandy or liqueurs for about an hour after the end of the meal. Here are some general gift giving guidelines (but also check to be sure they are permitted under company policy): • If invited to dinner at an Austrian's house.2017. Expected behavior does not vary based on the formality of the situation. postal workers. chrysanthemums or red roses. They entertain in restaurants. lilies. • If giving flowers. • In some houses you may be asked to remove your shoes.PrintView Page 18 of 45 It is customary to tip or give small gifts to service workers such as house cleaners. . After dinner. Entertaining How Austrians Entertain Austrians enjoy eating well and take their food seriously. • Do not ask for a tour of the house. • Remain standing until invited to sit down. Punctuality is considered a sign of respect.2. The home is considered private and they invitations are limited to family and close friends there.. When in doubt. You may be shown to a particular seat. except for 12. If you are honored and invited to an Austrian's house: • Arrive on time. although the custom is not as prevalent as it once was. trash collectors. and other eating establishments. Austrians take pride in their appearance and expect others to do the same.. • Gifts are usually opened when received. give an odd number of stems since.culturewizard.m. You will be shown into the public areas. Table Manners able manners are formal in Austria since the culture respects rules and traditions. • A small gift for the children will be appreciated. It is important to use your best etiquette when dining in Austria.

• Meals are often served family-style or buffet style. • The host gives the first toast. • Do not take more food than you can eat.culturewizard. hold it with your knife and break it apart with your fork. do not leave it If invited to a meal at a restaurant. Hand the tip to the waitperson. the person extending the invitation usually pays. • Do not begin eating until the hostess says mahlzeit or Guten Appetit. Austrians dislike You can find more explicit information on restaurant tipping in the Dining Out section above. • Keep your hands visible at all times during the meal. since this compliments the cook by saying the food is very tender. Dining Out Service charges are usually included on restaurant bills. • Put your napkin on your lap as soon as you sit down. however. • Do not rest your elbows of the table. Do not argue about the check. Toasting • Wait to see if the host offers a toast before sipping your drink.2. 8. . • To cut a dumpling..aspx. In more casual establishments. Do not keep them in your lap. • Women may make toasts. Proust! • An honored guest offers a toast of thanks to the host at the end of the meal.2017. looks the person making the toast in the eye and says. the waitperson will ask zusammen (all together) or getrennt (separate). but do not give less than 5%.the fork is held in the left hand and the knife in the right while eating. Everyone lifts and clinks glasses. simply reciprocate at a later time. • Cut as much of your food with your fork as possible. Tipping The following tipping hints are guidelines. depending upon the quality of the service. If there is no service charge.PrintView Page 19 of 45 • Table manners are continental -. it is customary to leave an additional 5%.. round the bill up. since close friends often get individual checks. keep them close to your body with your wrists resting on the table. • Restaurants: 5% if a service charge • Porters: $1 per bag • Taxis: 10% Approach to Time http://kpmg. When the bill is called for. tip from 10 to 15% in fancy restaurants.

culturewizard. When you leave. or outdoor activities. interesting places you have been. sports. point to your selection and the attendant will put it in a bag for you. Austrians have a good sense of humor. They do not touch people while conversing. say "Guten Tag" or "Gruss Gott".aspx. Punctuality is important. Conversation Topics As you might expect there are rules about accepted topic of conversation in Austria.. classical music.PrintView Page 20 of 45 Most Austrians are very aware of time and believe time is something that can. It is rude to eat while walking or taking public transportation. If you do not.2017. be controlled.2. or anything else that might be considered controversial. Other Situations When you enter a shop. Many theatres do not allow coats in the seats. money. architecture. local politics. You will be taken at your word. and should. or other public area. vacation plans. family problems. 8. and do not utilize a lot of hand gestures. Austrians like around an arms length of personal space. Check your coat in the cloakroom at the theatre. In private settings.. It is common to say hello when you meet people in a lobby. so do not make promises idly. self-deprecating humor is welcome. It is expected that the younger person will greet the older person first. Do not ask personal questions or inquire about the immigrant problem. elevator. Social events start on time and workers leave their place of business promptly at quitting time. say "Auf Wiedersehen". Everything has an appointed starting and stopping time and these times are followed stringently. Safe topics of conversation include Austrian culture. http://kpmg. When buying produce. you will be looked down upon. . and is viewed as important since it indicates proper planning. Most Austrians dress up to go shopping. It is rude not to acknowledge the shopkeeper. Eating in public is limited to Nazi occupation.

Do not drop into an Austrian's home uninvited.. The person may suggest that you meet at a local coffee bar instead. • Public displays of affection are frowned upon. Faux Pas Keep in mind the following behaviors while in Austria: • Many Austrians find personal compliments embarrassing. Austrians are suspicious of hyperbole. Supermarkets do not provide free bags to shoppers. • Men enter restaurants before women.culturewizard. • Queuing is not part of Austrian culture. • Avoid exaggeration and offering excessive compliments.2017. Instead. Austrians expect proper manners at all times: • Men stand when a woman enters a room. 8. It is important to adhere to established rules of protocol when developing a personal relationship. They prefer a frank. • Do not draw attention to yourself. you may have some difficulty with the brevity of the Austrian speech pattern. You may either bring a bag with you or purchase one from the shop. • Do not chew gum in public. Communication is formal and follows strict rules of protocol. It is important to use the formal word for you ("sie") unless invited to use the informal "du". You may be referred to simply by your surname. If you are an indirect communicator who relies on non-verbal language to augment your message.. Communication Communication Essentials Austrians tend to be direct. telephone and ask permission before Even a pat on the back can be considered inappropriate. • Maintain eye contact when speaking.PrintView Page 21 of 45 Austrians are ecologically minded. This is not a culture that uses first names except with family and close friends. Pushing and budging are common in public transportation and in stores. . • Do not jaywalk. concise mode of expression.2.aspx. promises that http://kpmg. Address people by their academic title and surname.

. Key Words/Phrases: German is the official language of Austria. If you are from a culture that has a more subtle communication style.2. try not to be insulted by their directness. . Be cautious when teasing others. and make eye contact. It is important to speak softly and not to raise your voice in public. it is simply indicative of their desire to move the discussion along. shake hands. at times..culturewizard. Time is money and they do not want to waste time. Slovene. When submitting a proposal or recommendation. or displays of emotion. include back-up data that is clear and can be readily understood. Failing to do so is considered condescending and rude. Croatian and Hungarian are also official languages in some areas. This is not an attempt to be rude. When being introduced. German is generally used for business. Those who are over the age of 40 generally take etiquette There must be a record of everything. They may. Austrians are reserved. state your name. as such behavior may be interpreted as putting them down. formal. Such behavior may be misinterpreted as aggression.2017. 8.aspx. be direct to the point of bluntness. While many people speak two or three languages. both to back-up decisions and to maintain a record of discussions and outcomes. They do not readily understand self-deprecating humor. and well-mannered. Austrians tend to have a good sense of humor that is not necessarily refined or subtle. As you might expect of a culture that reveres tradition. Expect a great deal of written communication.PrintView Page 22 of 45 sound too good to be true. English German Yes Ja No Nein Good morning Guten Morgen Good day Guten Tag Good evening Guten Abend Pleased to meet you Angenehm How are you? Wie geht es Ihnen? Please Bitte You’re welcome Bitte Thank you Danke http://kpmg.

.com A series of short videos featuring German The German alphabet.culturewizard. rather than what the translator thinks each party wants to hear. However. http://kpmg. To be on the safe side you may want to meet with the translator prior to your appointments so that the person learns your accent and can be exposed to any technical or non-familiar terms that may be used. Their tone-of-voice is somewhat Short video featuring ten key phrases in Austrian non-verbal expressions are not key to the communication. but they will become more demonstrative as you get to know each other. and links to more information. Using Translators Take care in selecting a translator and develop an early understanding of what you expect--specifically.PrintView Page 23 of 45 Excuse me? Wie bitte Goodbye Auf Wiedersehen Bye! Tschüs! Spoken Key Phrases http://www.aspx. Other than a handshake. They prefer a fair amount of space between themselves and others when conversing and tend to use few arm gestures. the translation must be exact. making eye contact during conversation adds to the credibility of the message and sustained eye contact throughout a conversation is desired. http://www. Language Related Videos German Non-Verbal Language Austrians expect to be taken at their word and are straightforward. As such. 8. .2. Have your translator explain to you the most elementary of basic courtesies. spoken phrases. touching is not a part of common interaction among acquaintances. Developing a thorough relationship with your translator enables them to argue your points with a level of confidence they might not otherwise

When leaving a message. Some companies have strict protocols for email use. Once you have developed a business relationship. while others do not. and their Telephone At the beginning of a relationship it is a good idea to address businesspeople using their honorific title. speak slowly and distinctly and leave your contact details. academic or professional title. In general. it is important to use all titles given on a business card. first names are not frequently used in business. First names are not used in business. Business letters are used to convey or provide information.culturewizard. therefore. In this formal culture. they should be brief and to the point. It is a good idea to think of any form of written communication as a formal representation of you and your professional image. you will know how best to communicate with an Austrian colleague by email. When writing. Mobile phones are extremely popular. It is important to respond promptly to correspondence received from an Austrian firm. Email is often the main vehicle of communication in business situations as it provides a record of what was stated. This may later be shortened to using surnames only. As with other forms of communication.PrintView Page 24 of 45 Mail & Telephone Letters/Email Written communication is formal and adheres to strict rules of protocol. slang. Avoid using idioms..2017. When contacting senior level executives. It is best to have all written communication translated into German.aspx. email is a quick way to provide information.. especially in the beginning of a relationship. 8. Letters should be addressed using the person’s title and their surname. Austria has a formal culture and there is a proper way to do most things. request information or come to agreement on business matters. Do not use email to make your initial contact with a company. It is important to treat the secretary with utmost respect as they function as a gateway. Conference calls are often used to facilitate discussions with people who are not in the same location. knowing some German demonstrates an interest in a long-term relationship. you may have to go through a secretary. avoid emotionality and conduct yourself in a professional demeanor. Presentations http://kpmg. . Clarity is important. and jokes. Although not necessary. Voicemail is common.2. although this practice is changing with younger workers and those in more casual business environments.

Presenter: • Check in advance to determine if you will need an interpreter. grammatical or computational errors and spelling mistakes indicate lack of attention to detail. • Avoid humor. you are expected to be an expert. • Then provide an overview or agenda and state the expected length of the presentation. it may make you appear unprofessional. . Austrians expect (Given the need for details. Keep facial expressions to a minimum. • Businesspeople are very detail-oriented. Opening the Presentation: • Welcome the audience. 8. • Avoid fancy gimmicks in visual presentations. • It is customary to provide printed materials at the end of the presentation.PrintView Page 25 of 45 Handouts: • It is a good idea to have handouts in both German and English. Use common sense arguments. • Typos. intersperse charts and graphs. • Speak in a straightforward manner.aspx. exaggeration or self-promotion. • Speak confidently. do not focus entirely on one member..) Body of the Presentation: http://kpmg. • Use diagrams and pictures when possible.culturewizard. Presentation Slides/PowerPoint: • Presentation materials should be in both German and English. • To emphasize a point. • Handouts should include background data or charts as well as testimonials and references from clients who have successfully used the product/service.2. • Handouts should include facts and figures that supplement and reinforce what is said. • Make eye contact with your audience. • Relay the information in a subdued manner. • The audience may ask pertinent questions for clarification during the presentation. • Begin with a brief history of your company and your products or services. • Avoid phrases that imply you have an emotional tie to the information being conveyed. "I think" or "I believe" is preferable to "I feel".2017. • You may ask the audience to turn off their mobile phones. Audience: • Will arrive on time and expect the presentation to start on time. the time required may be longer than in many countries. • Avoid using hyperbole. • Moderate expressive hand gestures if possible..

. • Interactive presentation styles may not be appropriate. This leaves no ambiguity as to what is the day and what is the month. • Leave time for a Q&A session at the end of your presentation.aspx. each with 12 hours. and 8:45 is ¾ 9. To avoid confusion. If the day or month is less than 10.7. Example: July 9. To ensure there is no confusion. including leading zeroes is optional. The year may be written in two or four digits.2017. provide historical context and success stories. 8. 8:30 is ½ 9. Time The 24-hour clock is a timekeeping convention where the time of a day is the number of hours since midnight. .PrintView Page 26 of 45 • Presentations should be well-organized and to the point. • Demonstrate how your idea has worked in the past. which require precise responses. Austrians generally communicate using the 24-hour clock. 2011 could be written 9. They will often be interested in how this solution has worked in the past. month and year format with either periods or slashes between each number. you may want to use the 24-hour clock when scheduling appointments. The 12-hour clock divides the day into two periods (midnight to noon and noon to midnight).11 or 09/07/ 2 o'clock in the afternoon would be 14:00 in the 24-hour clock.2. http://kpmg. • Thank the audience. Closing the Presentation: • Present a summary at the end of the presentation. • Explain how the recommended solution solves an existing problem..culturewizard. so 8:15 is reported as ¼ 9. • You can never provide too much detail in a presentation to Austrians. Thus. • Provide supporting documentation including facts and figures. although they may use the 12-hour clock when speaking. • Expect detailed and challenging questions from the audience. you may want to spell out the name of the month. • Emphasize details and explain the practical implications of your information. • Austrians like to analyze materials in depth. • End with something for the audience to think about or consider. Date/Time Date In Austria. Austrians use the fraction of an hour with the upcoming hour. dates are generally written in the day. • When presenting a new concept.

and "Doktor". refer to the person by their honorific title and academic title without the surname.D.PrintView Page 27 of 45 Internet Language & Phrasebook Newspapers Postal Services Radio & Television Business Protocol Meeting & Greeting Austrians are generally formal and may not initially appear friendly to people from more informal cultures.2. which is used to denote either a Ph. • Shake hands with everyone at the meeting. "Magister" (someone with a MS degree). • After the initial introduction. 8. • Maintain direct eye contact during the greeting. http://kpmg.culturewizard. • Repeat your surname during the greeting.. • Handshakes should be firm and confident. or a medical degree. • Academic titles are used with the surname. The most commonly used academic titles are "Ingenieur" (engineer). They adhere to rigid rules of protocol and expect others to do the same. . • Wait for a woman to extend her • Shake hands at the beginning and end of meetings.2017.

• Wait until asked before using someone's first name. Before embarking on an international trip. Although not a business necessity. it is generally a good idea to check with the local office to determine what the appropriate dress code is in a specific • Business dress is conservative.. include the founding date on your card as it demonstrates stability. . it demonstrates an attention to detail. • Women should wear either business suits or conservative dresses. Some industries and companies may have less stringent requirements.culturewizard. including secretaries and receptionists. • Make sure your business card has your title prominently displayed. 8. ask the person which title they want you to use. • Include any advanced academic degrees or honors on your business card. Business Attire The way a businessperson dresses conveys their professional image and their respect for the people with whom they conduct business. Business Cards • Business cards are exchanged without formal ritual. • Business dress is becoming more casual among businesspeople under 35.2. use the honorific title Herr to address a man and Frau to address a woman with their surname. what we report is the conservative approach to business attire for a country. • If your company has been in business for a long time. and individual organization culture. event.aspx. • It is a good idea to have one side of your card translated into German. • Present your business card to everyone you meet.2017. conservative business suits with starched white shirts. As such. • Shoes should be highly polished. http://kpmg.PrintView Page 28 of 45 • If someone does not have a professional or academic title.. Dressing well until you know the company's policies is a good idea. Appropriate attire varies within countries based on location. • If you receive a business card that has more than one title. • Men should wear dark-colored. complemented with elegant accessories.

you should have a gift on hand that you can give in return. open until 5:00pm on Saturday Business Meetings http://kpmg. however. • If your Austrian business associates invite you to lunch. 8:00am—12:30pm. • Wait for your host to initiate business discussions.. on Friday many businesses close at noon or 3:00pm • Banks: 8:00am—12:30pm. • Given the delineation between work and social life. do not overshadow the hospitality you received. you should reciprocate. • Gifts are sometimes exchanged when an important deal closes.aspx. • Gifts should be of high quality. Business Hours • Offices: 7:30am—6:30pm Monday to Thursday. • Do not haggle over the check since it will embarrass your host. • Business breakfasts are becoming more common. • Gifts are generally opened when received. • Do not give something with your company logo unless it is discrete. • Do not sip your drink until the host offers a toast.PrintView Page 29 of 45 Gifts Here are some general gift giving guidelines (but also check to be sure they comply with company policy): • Gifts are not normally part of the business if you receive something.2017. 8. However. consider something from your country. you may not be invited out socially until your business is nearing completion.culturewizard. brandy. • The person who extends the invitation is the one who pays.. • If you wish to give something. music. Business Entertaining • Many business discussions are held over lunch. 1:30pm—3:00pm Monday to Wednesday and Friday. . or something for the person's office.2. 1:30pm—5:30pm Thursday • Government offices: 9:00am—3:00pm Monday to Friday • Shops: 8:00am—6:00pm Monday to Friday. a book.

They will add their comments if asked and will ask questions if they do not understand what has been said. • Who attends: Employees or key stakeholders who have a vested interest in the matters to be discussed. When dealing with foreigners. 8. Great respect and deference are paid to managers and leaders.PrintView Page 30 of 45 Meeting Essentials • Structure: Agendas are an integral part of the business culture and are distributed in advance of the meeting. open the meeting. figures. .culturewizard. and ensure that agenda items are covered and that the next steps are clear. Meetings are not brainstorming sessions. set the pace. and examples http://kpmg. The agenda will be followed. leaders are strong and somewhat dictatorial. This is not a culture that endorses discussions on other topics. Since colleagues do not regularly socialize outside the office. facilitate the discussion. The Austrian office is hierarchical. • Who participates/speaks: Some or all of the participants may be expected to add to the discussions. They are discussed point-by-point with little discussion about subjects not relevant to the agenda. Austrians are analytical thinkers who require facts. The most senior Austrian will chair the meeting. schedule the starting and ending time of the meeting. When entering a private office or meeting room. The leader will not necessarily believe that it is important to reach a consensus of the participants. • Purpose: Meetings are generally held to disseminate information or allocate tasks based on decisions that have already been made. This serves as more than an ice-breaker. This may be changing somewhat as younger workers (under the age of 30) adopt more democratic management styles. this brief period of social interaction allows them to get to know one another. There is generally a protocol to be followed whereby seating is assigned on the basis of rank. do not sit until told which seat to take. Management tends to be autocratic and does not ask for subordinates’ ideas or opinions. Meetings typically start after a brief amount of small talk.aspx. • Role of Leader: As you might expect in a hierarchical culture. Participants are expected to arrive prepared to discuss the matter at hand.2017.. They agree to the agenda. The meeting ends when the last item on the agenda has been discussed. it allows them to determine something about your character. invite relevant

m.. http://kpmg. If you cannot arrive on time.-1:00 p. telephone immediately and offer an explanation. If you expect to be delayed. Expect the people you are meeting to be prompt as well. This allows them to make efficient use of the balance of their workday. and facts from a technical perspective.culturewizard. They expect details to be discussed until everyone understands them. . It is a good idea to confirm the meeting in writing about one week in advance. they like schedules. Austrians are generally direct communicators who can be blunt when disagreeing with what someone has said. This is not meant as an insult. or the week before Easter.m.2. The preferred times for appointments are 10:00 a. Decision making generally takes place at the top of the company.. and 3:00 p.2017. Scheduling Meetings Appointments are necessary and should be made 3 to 4 weeks in advance when meeting with private companies. Since Austrians are good planners. This is not a culture that accepts change without a logical It is common for senior management and executives to arrive at their desks a little later than their subordinates and to remain in the office later. Since many companies are relatively small. Direct communication is seen as part of the necessary process to achieve the best business outcome. the two weeks surrounding Christmas. They will generally address issues. 8. They are suspicious of businesspeople who gloss over details. problems.m. If you are recommending a change in process or procedure. This is consistent with the more formal nature of the culture. Punctuality is taken extremely seriously. Do not try to schedule meetings in August.m. Austrians plan their day and will have blocked out the time for the meeting. It often takes 2 months to schedule meetings with government agencies. Austrians will assume that you will be lax in meeting deadlines or doing what you promise. you should have little difficulty meeting with the decision maker. Therefore. most business meetings will have an ending as well as a starting time. the rationale for the change must be clearly specified. It is very rude to cancel a meeting at the last minute and it could ruin your business relationship.aspx.PrintView Page 31 of 45 to back up statements.-5:00 p.

.2. Although English may be spoken. what the next steps are. • If you want items included on the agenda. Do not remove your suit jacket unless invited to do so. Such behavior may be misinterpreted as aggression. .PrintView Page 32 of 45 Agendas • Agendas are an integral part of the business culture. send these in advance of the meeting. Failing to do so is considered condescending and rude. need to know your title so they can determine how you "fit" into your organization. Those who are over the age of 40 generally take etiquette seriously.culturewizard. Austrians are reserved. • The agenda is generally followed point-by-point. The do. Ensure printed material is available in both English and German. Follow-up with a letter outlining what was agreed. Address people by their academic title and surname. http://kpmg. Maintain eye contact when speaking. they do not need a personal relationship to conduct business. if any. and make eye contact. It is important to use the formal word for you ("sie") unless invited to use the informal "du". and who is the responsible party..aspx. shake hands. it is a good idea to see if you should hire an interpreter. formal. discussion of items not included on the agenda. Conducting Meetings Communication is formal and follows strict rules of protocol. This is not a culture that uses first names except with family and close friends. Management Styles Relationships Although Austrians prefer third-party introductions. Business is generally formal. As you might expect of a culture that reveres tradition. You may be referred to simply by your surname. • There is little. state your name.2017. and well-mannered. It is important to speak softly and not to raise your voice in public. When being introduced. however.

there had been a gap between managers and subordinates. the Austrian business environment is undergoing a transformation. Impact of Generations on Relationships With the entrance of Generation Y into the workplace. This includes using titles and the formal form of the pronoun you when speaking German. business remains hierarchical and titles denote status within an organization. Do not rush this process. First impressions are extremely important to Austrians. so it is imperative that they understand your level relative to their own. 8. It is important to exercise good manners in business. they follow established protocol and expect others to do the same.. Younger. Therefore. it is important to demonstrate respect and deference to others. Nonetheless. however.culturewizard. There is little joking or small talk in the office because they focused on accomplishing their business objectives. Try to maintain eye contact while speaking as it is interpreted as who will judge you on your clothing and demeanor. Austrians are cautious. especially those in a position senior to your own by addressing them by their title and using the formal form of the word you when speaking German.2. it is a good idea to abide by accepted protocols when addressing someone in a position senior to your own. Austrians show deference to people in authority. this is beginning to change as informal Gen X and Y employees take up positions. Austrians want to be seen to be doing the right thing. Austrians are polite and formal in their business dealings. employees are challenging some of the rigid adherence to rules and protocol and want to see more open communication in their organizations. act formally and conform to the myriad rules and regulations that abound in the country.. Management Essentials If you were to think about the most important cultural attributes that you will see operating in business in Austria.PrintView Page 33 of 45 Despite the lessening of its importance with younger generations. .aspx.2017. It takes time to move beyond introductory small talk to more substantial issues. at least until a personal relationship has been developed. Historically. Since the culture remains hierarchical. they would be: • Hierarchical structures • Formal style • Controlled time • Direct communication In business. http://kpmg.

This is not to say that they will not work additional hours should there be a crisis. "we would appreciate receiving this by …" may easily be interpreted as an estimate. Austria is a controlled-time culture.. "We need this information by …". 8. Austrians value their free time and will not necessarily work late in order to meet an unrealistic deadline. it is better to write. In Vienna.aspx.. When writing about a deadline.PrintView Page 34 of 45 Risk Tolerance The way risk is viewed may depend upon the age of the person. At the same time. security and order are important to Austrians. Saying something to the effect. People in controlled-time cultures tend to have their time highly scheduled.2. Business tends to be conservative and extremely structured. As you would expect from a conservative culture where planning is prized. Businesspeople working in the western provinces take a more controlled view of time than do those in the eastern provinces. it is important to be specific. They do not embrace a new concept simply because it is new. although the absolute level may vary throughout the country. They have to be convinced that the change is needed and that it will benefit the organization. but such hours will not be part of their traditional working behavior. The culture has a low level of risk tolerance. Schedules & Deadlines In general.2017. businesspeople are more willing to accept change and younger businesspeople are often more receptive than older staff. they tend to view people who frequently work additional hours as inefficient. and it’s generally a good idea to provide and adhere to performance milestones. In fact. which includes Vienna. . Meeting deadlines and schedules is expected and businesspeople generally plan their business day so that they meet agreed upon deadlines. To make the point. and even the organization's how global the company is.culturewizard. Decision Making Company Structure Most organizations are structured along hierarchical lines with clearly http://kpmg.

. Austria is an old land where thousands of years of history. although this is slowly changing due to the needs of Generation X and Generation Y http://kpmg. They are comfortable complying with decisions. can be tough to break into the inner circles of wealth and power. These generations expect praise for a job well done and this is starting to shape the way management is practiced. Austria's workforce is educated. reliable and generally highly motivated. their age.. • Offer a variety of tasks and projects and increasing responsibility. this may depend upon the industry. honor and loyalty still have meaning. even before Generation Y entered the workforce. format of results.2. "ladies and gentlemen doing business with ladies and gentlemen". Age is an important determinant of the best way to manage employees. Doing business in Austria has often been described as. directions may be in the form of broad guidelines with the expected method. mentoring and coaching. and protocols to be observed clearly delineated. Subordinates are expected to ask their managers for guidance if a new situation. 8. Many organizations have implemented flexible working hours. The head of the organization can make decisions autonomously.culturewizard. • Provide ongoing training. Impact of Generations on Managing Employees Positive feedback is not an integral part of the business culture. generally in a somewhat indirect manner so the employee is not embarrassed. the professional level of the employees concerned. Business and politics are very much entwined. managers provided clear-cut directions and ensured that subordinates had the proper materials to complete the task. subordinates do not expect their managers to seek their concurrence. When offering constructive criticism.2017. Negative feedback is provided as needed. • Take an interest in the employee as a person. When managing employees born between 1983 and 2000 (Generation Y). There is little corruption but bureaucracy can move slowly.aspx.PrintView Page 35 of 45 defined levels of authority. start with something positive. consider the following: • Provide frequent feedback. With the increase in Generation X and Y employees in professional jobs. Again. The organization chart is an accurate representation of the way the organization operates. which is not outlined in a process document. In general. in private. arises. In return. Managing Employees Historically subordinates demonstrated respect for their managers by following their directions explicitly. and the corporate culture.. although this is beginning to change as younger employees who achieve senior level positions expect to be consulted if they are a key stakeholder.

which would seriously undermine the hierarchy within which they operate. Team Focus Teamwork is not especially important to Austrians. Decision Making Decision making tends to be clearly delineated by job level. To work with others from another on a team could create stress for an Austrian. verify the references and testimonials.2017. For the most part. This is changing in some industries as Generation X and Y employees have a greater say in how companies operate. and ensure that there are no surprises. It is quite common for decisions made at cross-department teams to be reviewed again after the individual members repot back to their department manager. they make decisions methodically. For the most part. They analyze the background material.aspx. 8. teamwork revolves around individual employees performing tasks given to them by the team leader. although this is slowly beginning to change. They do not see team success in the same way. to achieve their assigned part of the job or project. who see themselves as individual contributors. since the person might have to make decisions that could adversely impact their department.. Austrians are individualistic and are motivated by individual achievement.culturewizard. Negotiations http://kpmg. in many industries decision making is the responsibility of senior executives. Austrians desire to maintain harmonious working relationships. In general. position title or signing authority. although they may have less allegiance to the overall results of the team. They then prefer to work independently. Decision making tends to be slow and deliberate. departments are strongly hierarchical with a clear leader. As you would expect from a hierarchical . without interference. At the same time. Teams rarely cross departmental lines. Since Austrians are risk averse. In general. • Let the employee know that they are appreciated both as a person and for their contribution.PrintView Page 36 of 45 • Consider new and innovative approaches to motivate the individual. Team members expect to be given clearly defined instructions and goals by the team leader. Austrians take pride in their work product..2.

Negotiations proceed at a relative slow pace since Austrians adhere to a methodical and planned approach. patient demeanor that focuses on finding solutions that satisfy both parties leads to the best results. Austrian negotiators avoid aggressive techniques since they dislike confrontation. It is in your best interest to open with a realistic offer. Austrians view negotiations as a problem solving process. If someone says that they do not have the authority to make a commitment and must seek higher approval. 8.2017. Austrians approach negotiations in an orderly fashion. Austrian negotiators may spend considerable time discussing details.PrintView Page 37 of 45 Gracious good manners are expected. this is most likely the case. they do not expect to discuss the item again. The primary negotiation style is cooperative and the basic belief is that there should be a win-win outcome. If your initial figure is viewed as outlandish. They do not appreciate aggressive or hard sell techniques. or humor in negotiations. Once a decision is reached on an item.2.culturewizard.. Do not remove your suit jacket unless invited to do so. They scrutinize proposals carefully. Austrians do not have a great deal of tolerance for euphemisms. Moving There Advice and Tips for Moving http://kpmg. They will thoroughly review substantiating data and analyze information that is provided. irony. keeping them hidden from view is extremely rude. Since they are consummate planners. it may disrupt negotiations. It is important to avoid confrontation or overbearing behavior. Keep your hands on the table. .com/DesktopModules/RW3Modules/CP2014/PrintView. Austrians do not like haggling. discussing one item completely before moving on to the next. Austrians prefer a straightforward negotiation style. A calm. This can be difficult for people who come from cultures where the agreement is not final until the contract is signed.aspx. At the same time. Arguments should be logically propounded and it is important that the person speaking remain calm when presenting the business case. For the most part. compromises are only used when there is no other way to keep the discussions moving forward..

2. we think of political situations as causing safety 8. pickpockets and spontaneous political demonstrations. The wise traveler is cautious about hurricanes and earthquakes along with hotel fires.aspx. but ordinary crime. dial: 112 Emergency Numbers Emergency Telephone Numbers To reach emergency services from a local phone. this information is compiled for travelers in general and will apply in varying degrees to your destination and personal situation. With the exception of the emergency telephone numbers. ..PrintView Page 38 of 45 Customs Regulations Entry Requirements Getting Around Getting There Safety & Security Emergency Numbers Emergency Telephone Numbers To reach emergency services from a local phone.2017.culturewizard.. Terrorist attacks and kidnappings have simply brought all security concerns to our awareness. dial: 112 Safety Precautions Today. weather and geographic problems also pose risks. http://kpmg.

valuables and other important items. • Do not display your guest room key unnecessarily. including preparing a will. ◦ As a rule.2. In-Country So many variables go into being safe. your glasses (if necessary). • Don’t let strangers into your room.) • Read the fire safety information and know what you would do if you need to evacuate. Hotel Safety • Know how to call for help AND what to say. • Make copies of all of your travel documents (including detailed itinerary with contact numbers) and be sure two people have easy access to them.. . • Do the same with crucial health documentation. take an extra pair of glasses if you wear them. Know exactly where the nearest fire exits are. • Find out the services your company offers to you in case of emergency. • Be sure someone knows where you will be and how to contact you in emergencies at all times. (Remember to safeguard your passport. • Hide personal documents. • Lock your door and do not answer it until you feel comfortable that you know who it is. • Use the room safe or hotel safe deposit box. When in comes to your safety. • Think about the small (and large) disasters that could occur at home during your absence and be sure there is someone prepared to assist you. keep your room key. • Be sure you have enough of your prescription medication so you are all right if you cannot get a refill right away.aspx. and who to be watchful of. Seek information from cultural experts and local nationals whom you have confidence in. 8. where you can go and where to avoid.PrintView Page 39 of 45 Before You Go • Take time to get all of your financial and personal records in order. obtain and make several copies of important emergency company contact numbers to keep and give to all members of your family who might need them. Be sure to learn details of your location -.2017. • Talk with a trusted family member or friend about what types of emergencies might arise in your absence. and what to do in those events. and many of them revolve around understanding the specifics of where you are. how to carry yourself. • Women traveling alone will have different issues depending upon the morés of the society you’re visiting. a pair of shoes and some money by your bedside. don’t be afraid to ask. • In the event that you might need to leave your room quickly. be extremely cautious and circumspect. how to act in to • Travel with a flashlight. http://kpmg..

Be sure you have 24-hour hotline numbers and appropriate contacts who can assist you. • Embassies Around the World • Even if you are living in a relatively safe country. Emergencies http://kpmg. expensive cameras. Safety in Your New Home City • Learn about your host country and culture. Even groups of children can be working together to divert your attention while one will steal your money. These people are here to help you. • Use your Embassy. The following websites offer specific advice for women: • Travel Tips for Women • Best Women's Travel Tips • Her Own Way: A Woman's Safe Travel Tips • Tips for Solo Women Travelers Women Travelers Travel Tips Crowded Situations • When you’re in crowded places. but is extremely important so you can understand what may be offensive or negligent behavior. the safer you’ll be. (They will also arrange for you to have help. if you wish walking you to your room very late at night or escorting you from a parking lot to the hotel lobby)... • Carry as few valuable items with you as possible when you know you’re going to a crowded area. • Watch out for pickpockets who will try to distract you in many different ways while taking your money. it is reliable and safe. For example.culturewizard. 8. • The more you know about your location. reading local papers and telling your local friends to keep you informed. This is not only wise for business and social purposes. PDAs and cash are easy targets. ◦ Ask hotel concierge or front desk manager to assist you whenever you have questions about your safety. and you never know when a potentially dangerous situation can develop. but by identifying sources of local news.aspx. Keep informed—not only with your country’s published data and warnings. certainly understand written and unwritten laws and codes of conduct. be very careful to guard your property at all times.2. ◦ Use a hotel known for its security and be sure that whatever type of transportation you use. always be sure that close family or friends have accurate contact information so they can find you quickly. .com/DesktopModules/RW3Modules/CP2014/PrintView.2017. • For helpful information: Helpful Tips • If you are living in a high-risk location. your company should have guidelines for your safety.PrintView Page 40 of 45 ◦ Find out all the gender-based restrictions and abide by them. • No matter where you live—high risk or low risk countries—today’s world is volatile.

up-dated information. Always check to see what services your company may offer to you.. Don’t underplay the importance of understanding what is culturally appropriate—it may help you avoid some difficult situations. Prepare For Your Destination • Read about security and safety issues in the countries you’ll be traveling to or living such as a lost passport or the need for money because yours has been stolen. nor is it a stroke of luck.culturewizard. we recommend the following government sites as quite comprehensive and easy-to- understand: Australian Travel Advisories Canadian Travel Advisories UK Travel Advice US Travel Warnings http://kpmg. You might want to contact: International SOS to see if you qualify for some of their services. Security Issues Security is not simply a state-of-mind. . International SOS provides emergency medical and evacuation services for individuals and companies.PrintView Page 41 of 45 • In an emergency that requires help by your government. 8. contact: Embassies Around the World • Make sure you know the name of the firm your company has selected for medical emergencies and evacuation services.. this information is compiled for travelers in general and will apply in varying degrees to your destination and personal situation. practicing common sense based upon knowledge of your location will help you. contact: Embassies Around the World • Make sure you know the name of the firm your company has selected for medical emergencies and evacuation services. Nonetheless.2. International SOS provides emergency medical and evacuation services for individuals and companies. With the exception of the emergency telephone numbers. Emergencies • In an emergency that requires help by your government. Keeping yourself and your family safe anywhere you go—whether it is an extended trip within hours of your home or a long-term assignment halfway around the world—requires planning and active follow-through. • For the most current. such as a lost passport or the need for money because yours has been stolen.2017. Clearly the length of time you spend and the geographic and political profile of the countries you’re living in--or traveling to--will make a difference in your level of preparedness.aspx. You might want to contact: International SOS to see if you qualify for some of their services.

Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has in- depth information regarding all regions of the world. • Avoid calling attention to yourself by wearing fancy jewelry or carrying other expensive items. the U. 8. computer bags or other luggage unattended at any if asked. fire and other emergency personnel.2.S. • Whenever possible carry valuables and important prescription medications in your carry-on luggage.. phone and hours of operation.state. you could run the risk of being misinterpreted and perhaps becoming a target if your clothing is provocative or offensive. For example. Be sure you know the words to use in the local language. if possible. • Be sure you know how to contact (and get to) your country’s Embassy and Consulate wherever you are traveling—you need the location details. • Avoid disturbances and loud arguments. Be sure you know how to call for help in an emergency. quickly walk the other way. • For general information when you are en route. report it immediately to the nearest appropriate Embassy or consulate.2017.and geographic-related concerns. credit cards and other valuables. • Ostentatious jewelry will also draw attention to you. it is one of the most valuable items you possess--so protect it as you would cash. Your interpretation of this guideline needs to be based on local practices and customs. • Use your business address on your luggage tags. When they occur. The U. If it is lost or Moving Around Safely • Always remain alert. • Be sure to respond completely to requests by security officials and avoid comments about security that could be misinterpreted.PrintView Page 42 of 45 • Read about other precautions you should take for weather. Attire you may think is perfectly acceptable. • Dress conservatively. keep enough cash on hand so you will be all right if there are power failures and ATM machines don’t work. read safety literature and be sure you know where emergency exits are located.culturewizard. En Route • Protect your passport. http://kpmg.aspx. • Be able to answer questions about your luggage and be able to open all suitcases and packages immediately. . Otherwise. may not be so you’ll be well served to learn what is appropriate.S. offers a wide-range of information to travelers of all nationalities: http://www. State Dept. You may need to reach the police. • When you’re on the plane or train.. Embassies Around the World • See if there are any health-related issues in the countries to which you’re traveling. do not pack valuables in your checked luggage. • Do not leave laptops.

learn to use the local pay phones and keep change with you. • Be sure to know enough of the language to call for help. • Experts say that if someone does attack you. • You should also ask your company about specific transportation guidelines they’ve established for your safety. • When you have a specific location you’re going to. buses. ask colleagues or people who work in the hotel if there are things you should know about that subways. Get off if someone suspicious gets on. give them your valuables—money and passport—and do not fight back. Find out before you go if it is preferable to hire a private driver and car. • Avoid areas where you can become a victim of crime.S. • If you cannot speak the local language. and deserted train stations. • If you find yourself alone in a train car or compartment after everyone else leaves.aspx. • If you drive.PrintView Page 43 of 45 • Learn about transportation in your location—what’s safe and what can be problematic and when. independent taxi cabs may pose specific problems. and never pick up hitchhikers. Trains. • Even when you have a mobile phone. Contact your Embassy for detailed information. • Make others aware of your specific whereabouts. Identify the location of the emergency alarm system.culturewizard. • Be wary when you are alone in lifts. Know Where You’re Going • Ask people in the hotel what areas you should avoid. 8. such as poorly- lit streets. keep your doors locked and windows closed..2017. you may feel safer moving to an occupied car.. Consider marking and tagging the pages of a phrase book with these types of important phrases. *Sources: U.2. alleys. even when you’re going to business appointments. . Transportation Security Administration Settling In Accommodation http://kpmg. carry the card of your hotel or your address with you at all times--as well as your destination address.

.PrintView Page 44 of 45 Arrival Procedures Conversions Eating Out Entertainment Family Corner Health and Safety Media Money and Banking Nightlife http://kpmg. .culturewizard.2017.aspx.2.

PrintView Page 45 of 45 Shopping Social Clubs Sports http://kpmg. .