Can you imagine receiving an invitation to meet a client in Paris for a business lunch? Your initial feeling would be filled with excitement and energy! How exciting it would be to go to Paris, even for an overnight, to experience the city and to develop the relationship with your client. Planning your flights, you begin to realize the time, expense, and energy it would take to be in Paris for only one day. The jet lag, the workload when you return, and did I say…the jet lag? Therefore, you kindly decline the invitation in hopes that the business could be done via email, phone or web conferencing.
You just made a big mistake in developing the relationship with your client.
This is Paris, France not Paris, Texas we are talking about!
The French culture thrives on building successful relationships. In France, relationships tend to be developed over a nice meal and some wine. So if you want to have successful client relationships with the French, jump on the plane and go to lunch in Paris! And make sure you add on an extra day to see the Mona Lisa.
Not only will you nurture your client relationship, you will also build on your global mindset to be a successful global manager.
What would you do if you were invited to lunch in Paris? Please add your comments and experiences about doing business in France.