Doing business abroad? Simple faux pas can sink you

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Globalization has made cross-border business deals more common than ever. But, every day, deals are jeopardized or lost when foreign associates are offended by Americans unaware of other countries’ customs, culture or manners, etiquette experts say.

They commit a faux pas (a slip or blunder in etiquette, manners or conduct) while traveling, meeting a foreigner here or communicating on the phone or Internet.

“Americans are way too informal in their dealings with their counterparts abroad, and they end up perceived as uncouth and even obnoxious,” says P.M. Forni, a professor of Italian literature and civility at Johns Hopkins University. “Innocence, stupidity or arrogance make them behave in Cyprus the way they would in Cleveland.”

Read more: Etiquette Abroad 

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