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Traveling and Doing Business Outside the United States, Part 1

“Knowledge is power in a rapidly flattening and globalizing world.”*

During the next year, I will be traveling outside the U.S. for vacation, to visit international clients and during my term as SLA.org President. It’s been awhile since I’ve traveled abroad so I’ve researched some resources to help me get the latest information on cultural norms, business etiquette, and travel so I’ll be well prepared when I arrive at my destinations. Below are some current resources. Next month, I’ll include political, economic and statistical resources for non-U.S. countries as well as historical sources for travel and business information.

Business
World Business Travel is published by Global Business Media Ltd (a UK-based e-publishing company). It covers 39 countries from Argentina to the USA. Each country profile includes information on a range of topics of commercial relevance to anybody working in a global organization or studying international trade. Content is provided by experts on global business culture covering topics such as computers, banking and more. Each country profile includes information on background to business, business structures, management and communication styles, teamwork, business dress code, successful entertaining and top tips. There is a section on facts and figures for each country. Also included is a suggested reading list for each country. There is an entire section of the site devoted to general cultural issues for all countries, such as working across cultures.

The World Bank’s Doing Business website provides objective measures of business regulations and their enforcement across 183 economies and selected cities at the subnational and regional level. It looks
at domestic, primarily small and medium-size companies and measures the regulations applying to them through their lifecycle. Based on standardized case studies, it presents quantitative indicators on business regulation that can be compared across the 183 economies and over time. These reports provide data on the ease of doing business, rank each location, and recommend reforms to improve performance in each of the indicator areas. The first report was published in 2003 and continues to be published annually.

Travel
Travel.state.gov  is jam packed with information for the vacation and business traveler. There is a short overview of the country, entry/exit requirements for U.S. Citizens, information on crime, medical facilities and health information, traffic safety and road conditions and more. One can also sign-up for the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) in case of emergency, accident, etc. while abroad.

*World Business Travel http://www.worldbusinessculture.com/index.html

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