- Punctuality is extremely important to the Irish in the business setting, however it is still generally acceptable to be up to 15 minutes late or to reschedule if one is very delayed.
- Business is often conducted in semi-social settings such as pubs or restaurants. In these circumstances, the approach is very loose and relaxed, with agendas taking a backseat to socialisation and building rapport. However, when conducting business in an office or professional setting, expect tighter standards to apply.
- Shake hands with everyone in the room during introductions.
- Expect meetings to commence with a period of small talk to build rapport before proceeding with the agenda.
- Negotiations and business proceedings generally involve much discussion, and participation is expected from everyone in order to see the situation from all points of view.
- Gift giving is generally not expected in the business context, however it is usually appropriate to bring a bottle of wine or a souvenir from one’s own country if invited to social business events.
Communication and Relationship Oriented
Irish and Australian business cultures are similar in their levels of formality and practices, sharing value in relationships and trust in business. Business integrity, cooperation and likability go a long way in establishing this trust, however communication is key to business practice for the Irish. Poor communication, aloofness and aggressive business tactics are not compatible with their business culture. Furthermore, boasting of one’s successes or exhibiting domineering behaviour will be unimpressive to the Irish. Showing competence through good communication and fair practice is preferred.
- Organisational structures and approaches vary in Ireland, but they are generally characterised by a high level of accessibility between the different levels of the administrative hierarchy.
- Ireland has some of the most lenient tax brackets for companies in Europe which has prompted multinational conglomerates (such as Google, LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook) to set up headquarters there since the global financial crisis. Ireland was listed as the best place to set up business by Forbes in 2013.
- On the Corruption Perception Index (2016), Ireland ranks 19th out of 176 countries, receiving a score of 73 (on a scale from 0 to 100). This perception suggests that the country’s public sector is somewhat clean from corruption.