Business dos and don'ts in Romania

Rvo,  Sunday, 1 October 2017

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Do you want to do business in Romania? Read the tips below.

The Romanians

  • The typical Western mentality of' time is money' does not apply in Romania. As a result, the way of doing business in Romania is sometimes more informal than in Western Europe. Building personal relationships and trust is of great importance. On the other hand, hierarchy and signature stamps are essential, which can make business more formal.
  • The Romanian mentality and way of acting differ from region to region. Transylvania, for example, has Habsburg influences, while behind the Carpathians there are Ottoman or Turkish cultural influences.
  • Many Romanians speak a foreign language. The younger generation speaks mostly English, while the older generation often speaks French. Romanians in Transylvania sometimes speak German (or Hungarian).

  • Making appointments

  • A cold call is usually not very useful for making initial contacts. Introduction by a mutual friend or business partner is often the best way to make an appointment for a conversation. Romanians arrange meetings shortly in advance. Please visit in time and confirm it a few days in advance, preferably by fax.
  • The first exploratory talks often take place in a pleasant, relaxed and informal atmosphere. The Romanian takes decisions in personal conversations.
  • Come to appointments on time. It is not uncommon for your interlocutors to be a few minutes late. Change business cards at the beginning of the call. Give anyone who is present a business card. In Romania, it is customary first to write the surname and then the first name.

  • Business culture

  • Despite the sometimes informal atmosphere, Romanian companies are hierarchically established. The Management Board takes the decisions. Therefore, check if your conversation partner is allowed to decide. Be alert: sometimes you get the impression that a decision has been taken, while others still have to agree.
  • Sometimes a drink is offered during or after the meeting. Refusing an alcoholic beverage (because you have to drive) is not an insult. Romania has strict police controls.
  • The Romanian host sometimes invites you to visit a museum or an afternoon in the mountains. This is a courtesy practice. Accept or refuse the invitation in a friendly manner.
  • Wear clean clothing, preferably a suit, when working in business meetings. Take into account harsh winters and hot, dry summers.
  • The Romanian authorities still have a significant influence on business life. Good contact with local government agencies is often just as important as the relationship with your business partner. Be wary of the problem of corruption.
  • The country has gone through a long process of reform. Legal certainty has evolved positively, including through membership of the European Union. However, the Romanian market does not (yet) offer the same assurances as other EU markets.

  • This article of is based on . Translated from the Dutch language by Jos Deuling.

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