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Working in the Philippines ?

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Jacques Paillard

Living in Philippines, from France

"All expatriates in my company joined InterNations because it really helped me get accustomed to my new life in Manila. "

Adriana Rodrigues Zon

Living in Philippines, from Portugal

"The idea of getting to know other expats in Manila was very appealing to me, and I've greatly expanded my network in the Philippines. "

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The Philippines at a Glance

Doing Business in the Philippines

More and more expats start working in the Philippines to benefit from the booming economy of the archipelago! Want to join them? Our guide to working in the Philippines offers info on the nation’s economy, etiquette, and everything else you need to know about the country's business world.

Business World

Foreign business people who are used to a rather egalitarian way of doing business may at first be put off by the hierarchies prevalent in Filipino companies. The strong sense of hierarchy in businesses within the Philippines may even show in seating arrangements throughout meetings.

The different working relationships and roles of individual employees often reflect the structure of the Philippine family. The boss plays a paternalistic role and creates a hierarchical management. In this type of business world, a high status, mutual respect and a good reputation are essential when doing business. Thus, age and status demand high levels of respect.

Business Practice

In the Philippines, doing business is a highly personal endeavor. If you plan to close a business deal in the Philippines or are even getting ready to invest, you should bring enough time and patience. A personal introduction through a friend or business associate is essential to establish a relationship with your business partners. Keep in mind that, in the Philippines, a successful business relationship is based on personal contact, human interaction, and trust.

As mentioned before, Filipinos are incredibly status-conscious and the use of formal titles is considered an important way of showing respect to your business partners and colleagues. Unlike in other Asian countries, the exchange of business cards is not overly formalized, albeit still being important. You should, of course, try to present and receive business cards with both hands. Include your title and your position on your business cards to emphasize the influence and status you may have.

Business Etiquette

When you begin to work in the Philippines, there are a few guidelines you should try to follow in order to not alienate your colleagues or business partners. All in all, it takes time to establish a strong business relationship. Try to be patient while you stick to these tips on business etiquette:

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