Intending to conduct new business in Lithuania? We offer the following business etiquette tips to help smooth the way:
Lithuania still has a hierarchical culture. It is important to make your initial contact with a high-ranking person who has a decision-making role. Lithuanians prefer face-to-face meetings, as they need to build relationships based on mutual understanding. They like to turn business relationships into friendships.
Appointments are necessary and should be made 2 to 3 weeks in advance. Send a list of people attending and their titles so your Lithuanian colleagues can assemble a team of people at a similar level. Confirm the meeting when you arrive and the day before as they are sometimes cancelled at short notice.
Meetings are formal and punctuality is considered important, so arrive on time. Initial small-talk is usual and you should wait to be told where to sit, usually across from someone of a similar level. Expect to discuss each point thoroughly before moving onto the next and prepare to be patient, as business tends to move slowly due to the bureaucratic nature of Lithuanian society.
Lithuanians are softly spoken and not particularly emotive speakers. They will not interrupt when someone is speaking. They will not be rushed into making a deal and will often use time as a tactic, particularly if they know you have a particular deadline. It would be wise not to divulge this, if at all possible.
NEED ASSISTANCE WITH EMPLOYEE BENEFITS IN LITHUANIA?
Just let us know. We’d be happy to put you in contact with our Lithuanian Partner MAI-CEE.