(MENAFN - PR Newswire)
NEW YORK, Dec. 5, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- From world culture expert,
Symbolism is important in many cultures. Giving a beautiful clock to sit on the desk of your American boss is a great idea. However, sending that same clock to your Chinese colleagues, no matter where they are, in China, Hong Kong, Singapore or San Francisco, is a cultural faux pas. The Mandarin word for clock is very similar for the word for death.
So what to give? In order to make an impression, it's imperative to consider what is culturally valued. You wouldn't want to send chocolates to a Belgian, would you? Or grapefruits to a Floridian? In Japan though, citrus fruits are highly prized and very expensive. Fancy fruits from Florida or California is a terrific idea. Not only are they rare, but they can be parceled out to many. In Japan, there are always many on the team you are working with (whether you know them all or not). It's a good way to recognize the efforts of the whole office. Giving something representative of your country that is difficult to find elsewhere is always appreciated.
Additionally, if you are invited for a holiday dinner in Europe, purchase an odd number of blooms and no chrysanthemums – they are used for funerals.
"Often," Dean shares, "People will pay a lot of attention to what to send but don't consider the wrapping." Color, style and design carry different meanings. While wrapping a gift in green for your Muslim colleagues in the Arab world is appropriate as it is the symbolic color of Islam; using green in Thailand is a no-no. Green is thought to be unlucky in South East Asia. Instead wrap your gift for your Thailand associate in red or gold which signify wealth and happiness.
As Dean says, "Sending a gift is always appreciated but sending a culturally appropriate gift will insure an enduring positive memory."
For more global holiday gifting ideas, visit Dean's Blog or listen to his upcoming podcast, Oops, Your Culture's Showing! airing on 12/12/18.
SOURCE Dean Foster
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