Just in time for the holidays: Kiss, Bow or Shake Hands: Sales and Marketing

Vallejo Community Issues Examiner November 11, 2011


Welcome to another posting of our new series: Just in time for the holidays

We are reviewing books that we think provide excellent food for thought as we transition into the 2011 holiday season. These are titles that are also great candidates for gift-giving.

Title: Kiss, Bow or Shake Hands: Sales & Marketing

Author: Terri Morrison and Wayne A. Conaway

Publisher: McGraw-Hill Professional

Print ISBN: 9870071714044
Pages: 288
Print Price: $20.00

The Internet gives everyone the opportunity, by browsing millions of websites around the globe, to immerse themselves in the cultures of their choosing. Should you be one of these surfers, how about testing your knowledge with this quiz?

Q: You are traveling to South Korea to close a business deal. When facing your South Korean business partners, how close should you stand?

1) 1 foot

2) 2 feet

3) 9 inches

4) 3 feet

(***Find the answer at the end of this posting)

If this question makes you pause, it probably confirms the fact that there is lots of cultural information on the Net, but little practical (and current) advice about successfully practicing business around the world.

It's a very specialized niche that continues to be the unchallenged domain of authors Terri Morrison and Wayne A. Conway. Since the mid-nineties, their seminal book, Kiss, Bow or Shake Hands, has been the go-to bible for understanding all the subtleties of doing business around the globe.

What time should I arrive?

Their latest book, Kiss, Bow or Shake Hands: Sales & Marketing, is billed as the "Essential Cultural Guide--From Presentaions and Promotions to Communicating and Closing." While the book contains much of the wisdom of their classic publication, it takes a step further, concentrating on how all parts of a business strategy needs to be effectively tuned to cultural differences.

For example, company websites are now one of the critical cornerstones of a business strategy. The authors remind us: "Inadvertently selecting the wrong website layout, the wrong sales approach, or the wrong advertising hook can result in lost market share." Readers get very specific pointers per country about taboo subjects, colors, images and words to avoid or to emphasize.

We also like their sections, such as How Close Should I Stand?, Three Tips for Selling, Language and What Time Should I Arrive? Calibrated for doing business in twenty countries, each section offers many strategic suggestions for starting, closing and keeping business deals.


***Answer: 3 feet (#4) (Just the right distance for the de rigueur bows between business clients

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