6 Things You Must Know For Doing Business in Europe
Expanding your business to a foreign land may come with its own set of challenges. With Europe being notorious for its slow growth even in favorable economic times, it may become trickier for doing business in Europe. In such circumstances, it becomes important for organizations looking for business opportunities in European countries to be prepared for all that comes.
Europe is a continent of forty-four small countries. Twenty-six of them fall under the Schengen area. Theoretically speaking, these 26 countries in the European Union have a joint immigration policy known as the Schengen agreement. However, there are as many different laws and cultures when it comes to immigrating, working and start selling products in Europe.
There are some European countries where it is quite easy to get the required permits for doing business in Europe. On the other hand, there are some others where it is nearly impossible to start a business. However, the best part about expanding your business in Europe is that you get access to the Schengen countries quite easily once you set-up your business in any one of them.
Important Things to Keep in Mind While Doing Business in Europe
I. Europeans prefer to know details
Europeans strongly believe that longer discussions lead to better understanding, improved relationships and thus wonderful results. They are always eager to know more and more about the product that they are going to buy. Not only this, but they are also curious to gain knowledge about the person whom they are dealing with and about his or her culture.
They believe that a better comprehension about the pros and cons of the product that they are intending to buy will help them in decision-making. Hence, they prefer to allow ample time for debates and discussions and ultimately time to reflect on the discussion and finalizing the deal.
If you are going with your products from a start-up company to sell it to a European organization, remember to keep enough time in hand and abundant information in your head and laptop. They might even come up with some questions on the day you are expecting to crack the deal. Hence, you better give each detail that you can think of about your product.
II. Who is equally important to what
For selling your products in Europe successfully, it is important what product and product-quality you have. However, for most Europeans, ‘who you are’ is equally important. As relationships matter to them, so does the person matters.
A European will measure the worth of the deal as well as the business associate by how much they know. For them, a businessperson should be well educated and well informed. You can highly impress a European with the amount of information you have about the current events, history, culture and especially the context you are in.
Just discussing the latest topics wouldn’t be enough. A European will be astounded if you bring new topics on the table. You can be sure to crack a deal if your European prospect feels he has learned something from you, even if that doesn’t concern your deal.
III. Sophistication is the key
Europeans are highly sophisticated and expect their business associates to be so as well. If you are looking for business opportunities in European countries, remember to keep sophisticated dressing and personality. These are utterly important for meeting Europeans, whether it is a formal visit or a rather informal dinner or drinks.
Overly showy clothing and accessories are not required. You need to dress to blend in with them graciously. Dark or neutral coloured formals with minimal accessories for men and subtle business suits for women are recommended.
Be ready with all the needed tools and materials in a formal meeting with a European. In addition to it, drinking and dining etiquettes are likewise important. This is because they prefer to discuss business over drinks and dinner to build a long and strong relationship with their business associates.
IV. Europeans deal over dinners
We cannot stress enough on this point for doing business in Europe. Drinks and dinners are actually an integral part of the European business culture. You can expect to win the deal if a European has called you over for a drink.
Remember the above points when you meet them for dinner. Be ready with plenty of new topics to discuss and share your knowledge with them. You can also expect new and different questions related to your business. There might even be discussions related to your culture and traditions.
Dressing here is again equally important as it is for a formal meeting. Subtle sophistication is pleasantly welcomed in Europe.
V. Money is not as important
For selling your products in Europe, the technology and quality of the product are quite important. However, Europeans are not money minded people. They do not mind spending millions of Euros on a product that is worth it. Again, the relationship and the intellect of the person they are dealing with are dear for them.
They ultimately pay for the product as well as a long-term relationship with a knowledgeable person. Europeans can also come a long way in helping their business counterparts just for the sake of their relations. Basically, they have enough money to be money-minded and hence, the good side of the humans can be seen.
VI. Laws for setting up a business in Europe
Since the relationship is so important for doing business in Europe, thus, physical presence is always an advantage for selling products in Europe. There are different laws for conducting business for foreigners in different countries of the European Union. However, one regulation is common in each case.
Foreigners do not need a work permit or working visa for doing business in Europe. All they need is a residency permit for selling their products in Europe after establishing a local office. These permits might be temporary or short-term. But if you are able to find good business opportunities in European countries for your venture and succeed significantly, you might get a long-term residency permit soon.
The process of getting residency permits for different European countries is different. Likewise, the registration process for doing business in Europe as a sole trader, a branch office of a foreign company or a partnership company again varies from country to country.
Your business proposal has to be strong and economically, culturally, scientifically and environmentally benefitting for the country to get approved from the authorities. Unless your proposal is profitable for the region, it is less likely that you get the residency permit.
The recent international immigration conflicts make it even more difficult in the current times to get your business proposal approved. Nevertheless, if your business is creating certain jobs for the local residents, your chances of getting the approval increase.
Europe is a vast market with easy access to most countries if you get a residency and business permit from any one of them. However, the correct tips and tricks are the real keys to get success for doing business in Europe. For working on the residency permits and other legal issues while looking for business opportunities in European countries, the best way is to seek the help of an expert.
Various B2B sales consulting firms might help you with the documentation to present your business proposal to the local European authorities. This can guarantee your success in getting the permits up to a certain point. Moreover, they can also help you in personal grooming before you start selling your products to the European prospects.
So, get in touch with the expert now to get your success ticket to Europe!