It came to my (John’s) attention last week that many countries around the world are not as lucky as Australia – in the sense of work and life balance…
A couple of months ago, I was approached by a businessman from Europe. He asked me if he could meet up with a few business people and attend a couple of networking events whilst in Australia (with the prospect of presenting).
My reply was, “yes, no problem, I’ll see what I can do for you”. Some weeks passed since our conversation, and it was now the 1st of December, so I decided to contact him to ask how things were going in Australia and when he wanted to meet up. He replied that he doesn’t arrive until the 30th December and leaves on the 17th of January and asked what I could organise
To put it bluntly, I couldn’t organise anything for him. During this time of the year Australian businesses are basically on skeleton staff, from the 19th of December till the end of January (approximately), there are no networking events and no senior staff are willing to arrange meetings.
My reply to him;
“I would love to assist, but unfortunately from 24th December till end of January Australia is on a ‘go slow’. It’s school holidays and most businesses shut down over Christmas/New Year – we don’t get back to normal until the end of January.
The reason for this, apart from Australia being a very family first nation, it’s also the main school holidays. All schools have at least six weeks off so everyone else does as well apart from the tourist industry (this is there busiest time). Most businesses are on skeleton staff and all CEO’s, senior managers and MD’s take time off.
There is no chamber or networking events until February so the opportunities to speak are very slim, and it will be difficult to find an organisation looking for a speaker. In fact, my business partner and I have most of January off”…
Why am I letting you know this?… because, all countries have their cultural habits and in Australia, we have a couple of strange but good ones. If you are doing international business it’s best to find out the best time to visit, so you get the best out of your trip.
We must all realise what our cultural way of doing business is not the same other countries, we might have similarities but we are all different and that is a great thing.
So make sure you talk to locals if you’re planning any sort of business trip or business venture.
To finish off the request above, I have agreed to catch up with him in January to discuss how Australian business works and show him around.
I and the Pendragon Team wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!