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United Kingdom Business Etiquette

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  UNITED KINGDOM BUSINESS ETIQUETTE  MEETING AND GREETING ã The handshake is the common form of greeting. ã The British might seem a little stiff and formal at first. ã Avoid prolonged eye contact as it makes people feel uncomfortable. ã Introduce a younger person to an older person. ã Introduce a person of lower status to a person of higher status. ã When two people are of similar age and rank, introduce the one you know better to the other person.  GIFT GIVING ETIQUETTE ã The British exchange gifts between family members and close friends for birthdays and Christmas. ã The gift need not be expensive, but it should usually demonstrate an attempt to find something that related to the recipient’s interests. ã If invited to someone's home, it is normal to take along a box of good chocolates, a good bottle of wine or flowers. ã Gifts are opened when received.  DINING ETIQUETTE ã Unlike many European cultures, the British enjoy entertaining in people their homes. ã Although the British value punctuality, you may arrive 10-15 minutes later than invited to dinner. However, if going to a restaurant be on time. ã Table manners are Continental, i.e. the fork is held in the left hand and the knife in the right while eating. Remain standing until invited to sit down. ã Do not rest your elbows on the table. ã When in a pub, it is common practice to pay for a round of drinks for everyone in your group. ã If invited to a meal at a restaurant, the person extending the invitation usually pays. Do not argue about the check; simply reciprocate at a later time.
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