queenschamber.org THIS IS QUEENSBOROUGH 4 DOING BUSINESS IN TURKEY: BRIDGING THE CULTURAL DIVIDE WITH THE BRIDGE BETWEEN EAST AND WEST BY JOSHUA BIENSTOCK Turkey, with a population of 73,000,000 citizens, is situated partially within Europe and partially within Asia and serves as a bridge between Eastern and Western commerce and culture. Its capital is Ankara and the predominant religion is Sunni Muslim. Its cultural roots date back to the ancient Greek, Persian, Roman, Byzantine and Ottoman empires, and the oldest known human settlement (7th Millennium B.C.) is in Catalhoyuk, Turkey. Numerous languages are spoken, including Turkish, Kurdish, Arabic, Armenian and Greek. Its citizens have a life expectancy of approximately 69 years and a literacy rate is 87%. The rich historical images which have been painted in Turkey’s past are breathtaking. Anatolia is the birthplace of historic legends, such as the poet Homer; King Midas; Herodotus, the father of history; and St. Paul the Apostle. The Trojan Wars took place in Turkey, and Julius Caesar proclaimed his celebrated words, “Veni, Vidi, Vici” (“I came, I saw, I conquered”) in Turkey. Ephesus and Halicarnasus are two of the Seven Wonders of the ancient world are in Turkey. Its iconic city, Istanbul, is the only city in the world built in two continents and is situated on the Bosphorus Strait. Istanbul is home to the iconic Hagia Sophia, with its majestic Muslim domes and Christian mosaics, the massive 17th-century Blue Mosque, and the circa-1460 Topkapı Palace, former home of sultans. Turkey’s economy is diverse. In the industrial sector it engages in textiles, food processing, autos, mining, steel and petroleum. In the agricultural sector it specializes in tobacco, cotton, grain, olives and livestock. It introduced both coffee and tulips to Europe. Its key exports are apparel, foodstuffs, textiles, metal manufactures and transport equipment. Turkish society is highly influenced by Islam, so organize your appointments and meetings around each of the five daily prayer times. You should not schedule any appointments during Ramadan or during July and August, since these are the most common annual holiday periods for Turkish business people. Attire is conservative and business attire (suits) is required. Consider the following tips on more effectively negotiating with our Turkish business partners: INTRODUCTIONS AND GREETINGS: •Greet the most senior person in the room first. •A firm but not too long handshake is appropriate. •Maintain eye contact while showing a welcoming smile. •Use of titles is a must, i.e. Dr., Professor, Mr., Ms., etc.; never use first names on their own. •Business cards are exchanged formally; take the time to read your counterpart’s card carefully and respectfully; include academic degrees on your card. •Exchanging gifts is not required in the Turkish business culture; however, they will be graciously appreciated. GETTING DOWN TO BUSINESS: •Be punctual, but don’t expect punctuality from your Turkish counterparts. •Small talk is useful for opening communication with most Turkish people. Turkish people usually do business with those they trust, like and respect. •Negotiations will be slow, methodical and lengthy; be patient. •Don’t use high pressure tactics in order to close a deal; it will be off-putting and may kill the deal. •Decision-making is a slow process, so be patient. •At meetings, documentation should be provided in both English and Turkish. •Lunches and dinners are for creating personal relationships. Don’t talk about business during a business meal unless the subject is brought up by your business counterpart. •A clearly structured and well-presented proposal is very important. •Speak slowly enough to ensure that you are understood, but do not be patronizing. •When a deal is struck, the contract must be memorialized in writing; you have no deal until the ink is dry on a signed contact. Be prepared to renegotiate the deal in its drafting stage. Being mindful of the cultural norms of Turkey and embracing its very methodical and precise style will yield positive outcomes. Future articles will focus on how to effectively negotiate around the world. Next month we will explore “Doing Business in Mexico.” Future articles will focus on Australia, Egypt, Russia and other critical international business partners. There will also be a future article advising our international business partners on the cultural nuances of doing business in the United States. Joshua E. Bienstock is the Director of the Dispute Resolution Institute of New York (“DRINY”), a not for profit educational institute dedicated to promoting conflict resolution at the workplace. He also serves as an Assistant Professor of Business Law at New York Institute of Technology’s School of Management. He has also served as a guest Lecturer at Cornell and CUNY as well at several Chinese Universities, Business Organizations, NGOs and Law Firms on the subject of Negotiations and Conflict Resolution. Contact Information: Joshua E. Bienstock, Esq. 917-854-6403 [email protected] TOURISTS SPENT MORE THAN $5 BILLION IN QUEENS LAST YEAR BY TAMER ALVICAR New York University Tourism brought $5.3 billion to Queens in 2015, supporting 56,816 jobs and generating roughly $753 million in state and local taxes, according to a new report from the Jonathan M. Tisch Center for Hospitality and Tourism at the NYU School of Professional Studies released in December. The transportation sector garnered the lion’s share of spending with 39.8% of the total, or more than $2.2 billion, according to the report. The study which was spearheaded by NYU graduate students Amit Kang, Nadia Kranker, Ed Zainudin and Derek Zhao with assistance from professor Tamer Avcilar, NYC & Co., and the Queens Tourism Council. Meanwhile, recreation venues, led by Resorts World Casino New York City, drew 21%, or just over $1.1 billion; the food-and-beverage industry took 11%, or roughly $615 million; and sports facilities attracted 10.8%, or $615,255,443. The other profiting sectors were accommodations (8.5%, or $477,651,000), retail (7.6%, or $424,019,000), and culture (1.4%, or approximately $78 million). As a result of this activity, one in 16 jobs in Queens is sustained by tourism. The borough has 111 hotels, 4,032 restaurants, 78 taxi companies, and 27 shopping centers and five beaches. In addition, there are more than 100 cultural, athletic and recreational attractions throughout the borough. The researchers conducted surveys, interviewed tourists, and sought information from expert panels, while also perusing readily available reports and searching databases and computerized input-output models. They defined a “tourist” as a short-term visitor who traveled to a Queens destination from outside his/her usual environment for a purpose other than employment.
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