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Business Etiquettes in Dominican Republic


Networking is important part of business since it broadens your base of contacts, and therefore, people who can smooth the way for you. This is a country where knowing the right person is often more important than what you know.

Doing favours and collecting favours owed is a highly developed art form. Name-dropping is commonplace and nepotism does not have the negative connotation it has in many other countries. Trust is crucial to developing relationships. It is important that you treat business colleagues with respect and not do anything to cause them loss of face.

Appearances matter; dress conservatively but well.

Senior positions in business are predominately held by the upper class; therefore, it is important that you pay attention to the hierarchy and show appropriate deference and respect to those in positions of authority.

Dominicans can be direct communicators and are not afraid to say what they feel.

Business Meetings

Business appointments are required and can often be scheduled on short notice; however, it is best to make them 2 to 3 weeks in advance by telephone, email or fax.

Arrive on time for meetings. Dominicans strive for punctuality, but they do not always achieve their goal. The first meeting is often quite formal. Small talk helps establish a rapport. Do not immediately begin discussing business.

Have all written material available in both English and Spanish.

Meetings are often interrupted and several people may speak at the same time. Be careful with facial expression and bodily movements – gestures are context sensitive and do not always translate well between countries. Patience is also important.

Business Negotiations

Expect small talk before getting down to business since Dominicans want to get to know people before doing business. It will take several meetings to come to an agreement. Negotiation and time for consultation are important. Relationships are viewed as more important than business documents. Negotiations and decisions take a long time.

Hierarchy is important, although not always apparent. Defer to the person with the most authority, as they are most likely the decision maker. There are often long bureaucratic delays in reaching decisions. Be patient. If you try to rush the process, you will be thought both rude and aggressive. Avoid high-pressure sales tactics. Dominicans are skilled negotiators and drive hard bargains.

Business Dressing

Appropriate business attire is expected. Men should wear good quality, conservative, dark coloured business suits Women should wear stylish suits or dresses. They should dress elegantly, including make-up and jewellery.

Business Cards

Business cards are exchanged during introductions without formal ritual. Have one side of your business card translated into Spanish. Present your business card with the Spanish side facing the recipient. Treat business cards with respect. When you receive a card, place it in a business card case to show that you will treat the person with respect.





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