Tag Archives: business

10 Tips for doing business in India

At Party - Copy   I am about to travel to India later this month, and it occurred to me to share some tips on doing business in and with that country.

1. Business is conducted at a slow pace. Be prepared for a good deal of discussion, followed by a long wait for final decision
2. A handshake signals an agreement; but business contracts will be scrutinized and this can take weeks or months.
3. A direct ‘No’ is never possible; Indians will say many things that sound like ‘Yes’ but aren’t!
4. Phrase questions carefully, i.e. “Where does this road lead?” not “Does this road go to Mombai?” Indian responses can be ambiguous or they’ll tell you what they think you want to hear so as not to upset you.
5. Always budget for “commissions”; you will be expected to pay for any introductions or favours. These payments are the oil that greases the wheel.
6. Indians are often seen as the best negotiators; they’ll drive a hard bargain, and then drive it some more! Negotiating teams are led by management and supported by technical experts. High-level management make the decisions but they may not be represented on the team. Try to make contacts at the highest levels and provide incentives for middle managers and assistants to help make your case.
7. Relationships are important, along with good contacts for business. Building trust is vital.
8. A win/win approach is aimed at, though compromise is acceptable, but trust makes everyone flexible.
9. Don’t expect people to use their initiative and make things happen; strong fatalism and predestiny play a large part in people’s thinking
10. Don’t give criticism as Indians easily take offence; be sensitive to, and respectful of, the concept of Face. Harmony is extremely important.

Above all, remember that Indians are proud. They have their own way of doing things, and that may not be the same as yours. Stand alongside them rather than head to head and you’ll go much further.

I shall be posting more tips of this ind on http://www.phillipkhan-panni.com


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5 Star Book Reviews

Reviews for The FT Guide to Making Business Presentations

Author: Phillip Khan-Panni

5.0 out of 5 stars Best book of its kind

By Gauger

I found this both an easy read and a most useful refresher. I have been making speeches and presentations for many years but this book gave me a new understanding of the relationship between presenter and audience. It helped me better to understand how audiences listen and was particularly helpful on the use of structure. The book’s own structure made it easy to dip into at will, and there is a useful section at the end to enable the reader to monitor future progress. I recommend it highly.

5.0 out of 5 stars Simply the Best

L. KIng

Like a fine wine, Phillip Khan-Panni improves with age.

As winner of the `UK Business Speaker of the Year’ award for 2011, Phillip continues to demonstrate the practical application of those presentation techniques so eloquently described in several books on public speaking.

In this latest book, all of the normal bases are covered from the perspective of a skilled professional speaker though I was particularly interested in the section on visual aids and specifically Powerpoint which is the source of so many presentation disasters.

Not content with the fashionable `don’t touch with barge-pole’ approach, Philip describes how the sparing use of Powerpoint can significantly enhance a presentation.

He also provides several technical tips intended to improve control of both hardware and software–avoiding, for example, the spectacle of Windows re-booting in the middle of your presentation

If you haven’t read any of Phillip’s previous books on public speaking, this one is an excellent source of his `distilled’ wisdom on the subject–if you are already a PKP fan, this book will bring you up-to-date with relatively recent innovations such as the use of YouTube and other multimedia sources

Like a fine wine, Phillip is best appreciated `little and often’.

5.0 out of 5 stars Comprehensive, authoritative and fun

William Cohen

This book manages to be business-like, personal and wise. Mr Khan-Panni tells several stories from his own experience explaining how he managed to win audiences over. He has an impressive pedigree as a speaker, having won national and international competitions. Every chapter has a tip, a checklist or an anecdote which is worth keeping – things like how to ‘prepare’ a speech at the last minute – prepare being the important word.

What I like about it is that it focus on practical business, with frequent references to branding, advertising and sales. I liked the way he turned on its head the usual nonsense about people being more afraid of public speaking than death. All these skills are vital to British businesses if we’re going to get out of the hole we’re in.

Have you read the book yet? You can still get a substantial discount from Amazon UK: http://tiny.cc/hdq1h. But hurry. The price is starting to go up!

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10 Tips for Networking

Many books have been written about how to Network, and they are all great.

However, if you are looking for a quick guide, here are 10 of the most important points to bear in mind and apply.

1. Who are you? You need to know what you bring to the party, and the benefit you can bring to anyone you meet. So develop an Elevator Speech to focus on the one or two benefits you can offer.

2. Your own database. Develop a database of related contacts who would be of interest to one another. For example, if you were creating a database of people who could help with household matters, the list would include a plumber, electrician, builder, etc. The same is true of other areas of business – who would be useful in your chosen area of concern?

3. How others can help you. You must articulate how others can help you, because you will sometimes be asked, ‘What can I do for you’ What help do you need? Think it through NOW, not on the hoof. It will also help to guide your choice of contacts: what kind of people do you need to meet to progress your career/search?

4. Open-ended questions. When you meet someone new, avoid asking questions that produce yes/no answers. Ask open-ended questions, such as ‘What kind of people do you work with?’ which will result in a meaningful conversation.

5. Maintain visibility . If you want to Network, you need to be seen and heard, and that means going to meetings and events where the people you want to meet will also be found. Always prepare something interesting to say in case you are given the opportunity to tell the gathering about yourself and your work.

6. Giving referrals. Develop a discipline for giving referrals. Do not make useless introductions that lead nowhere. Only refer people from your own database or circle if you are confident the connection is a good one. Remember, if you recommend someone as an expert, and your contact is not really that expert, s/he can lose face, and you will lose your credibility as a useful source.

7. Prompt follow-up . If someone refers you and you receive an enquiry (‘I was given your name by a mutual friend ?’) make sure you respond very promptly, otherwise both you and your friend will lose credibility.

8. Formal thanks. When you receive a referral (‘I was given your name by a mutual friend ?’), WRITE your thanks as soon as possible after you have met the contact, and tell your friend how it went. Otherwise your friends will stop recommending you.

9. Following up new contacts . When you meet someone interesting or useful at an event, and exchange cards or other contact information, make sure you follow up promptly, with a reminder of who you are and what you do. Never expect that others will remember you for ever and a day.

10. Be a useful source. At Networking events or other business gatherings, always ask, ‘What do you need – who do you need to meet?’ Above all, do not look for personal gain. Don’t treat each new contact as a possible source of business. If you are helpful to others, you will get all the business and help you need.

Finally, some guidance on mechanics:

* At a networking event, when you make eye contact with someone new, hold that eye contact, smile, offer your hand and introduce yourself.

* Always have business cards and/or a small notebook in which to write the contact details of someone who has no cards.

* When exchanging cards, treat both with respect.

* Write on the cards you receive, where you met and the date (but first ask permission to write on the card, and avoid writing on the card if the other person is Oriental)

* As you part, ask, ‘May I email you’.

Remember, Networking is about sharing and enhancing your common interests, and adding something useful to other people.

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What’s it like for you in August?

Because things tend to slow down a bit this month, I was tempted to write this:


August is:

When Disney’s at the Odeon,

When traffic flows more rapidly,

When bouncing balls boom down the street

And children’s tenor voices shrill

In urgent emphasis at play;

When sunny days invite you out

To stand and stare instead of work;

When Cricket fans are in despair

At yet another batting rout;

When morning papers seem quite thin

And postmen give your house a miss;

When half the nation’s gone on hol

And you are wondering why you’re not;

A time, perhaps, to down your tools

And set aside those pangs of guilt —

Refresh, recharge, and so enjoy

The scent of flowers that August brings.

Phillip Khan-Panni


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