Social Norms of Uk and Malaysia

Social Norms of Uk and Malaysia

Social Norms Social norms are : * The accepted behaviors within a society or group. * The rules or behavior that is accepted by a group of people, in terms of beliefs, attitudes, and values. * It is also described as ‘customary rules of behavior that coordinate our interactions with others’. Social Norms and Customs of The United Kingdom The People * The United Kingdom is made up of 4 countries : * England * Scotland * Wales * Northern Ireland * Residents of any of those countries may be called : * British * English * Scot * Scotsman * Welsh * Irish * Northern Irish * The characteristics of residents of the 4 countries : England – Polite, reserved and restraint. * Proud of their long and rich history. * Scots * Passionate about their country’s uniqueness. * Refuse to go along with English ideas. * Extremely sentimental about their family and country. * Free of class consciousness and social elitism, except in religion. * Subtle sense of humor. * Values generosity. * Wales * Part of the UK or more than 400 years. * Kept its own language, literature and traditions * Takes pride in their country’s heritage. * Loves to sing and talk. * Priority goes to their families. * Northern Irish * Values friendliness, sincerity and nature. Dislikes pretentious behavior * Possess a strong work ethic. * Family ties are important Meeting and Greeting * British are reserved. * May appear cool, indifferent or overly formal. * Shake hands with everyone present. * Shake hands again when leaving. * Handshakes are light and not firm * Women should extend their hand to men first. * Address someone by their last names and appropriate titles. * Call them by their first names if invited. Body Language * British are not black-slappers or touchy. * Do not display affection in public. * Intimate actions are reserved for family members and very close friends. Needs a reasonable amount of personal space. * Staring is considered rude. Corporate Culture * Punctuality is important for business meetings. * Formal approval of the Board of Directors is essential. * Decisions may be slow in the making. * Expects formalities and protocols to be followed. * Meetings should be scheduled well in advance. * Presentations should be detailed and subdued. Dining and Entertainment * Summon a waiter by raising your hand. * The host, the one who extends the invitation, pays the bill. * Do not discuss business at dinner in someone’s house unless invited by the host. When invited to someone’s home, arrive on time or at least 10 minutes after the stated time. * Wait for the host to begin eating before you eat. * Keep your hands on the table at all times during the meal. * Keep your elbows off the table at all times during the meal. * After the meal, place knife and fork side by side on the plate. * Leave the dinner party shortly after the dinner ends. * Write a thank you note to the host. * It is impolite to ask for a tour in your host’s home. Social Norms and Customs of Malaysia The People * Multicultural Nation. * Malay * Chinese * Indian * Important festivals of each ethnic group are public holidays. Few marry outside their own ethnicity. – all part of retaining their individual traditions and lifestyles. * Family is the centre of the social structure. * Great emphasis on unity, loyalty and respect for the elderly. * The concept of face * All ethic groups strive to maintain face – avoid shame both in public and private. * Face is a personal concept that embraces good qualities. * Face is considered a commodity. * The desire to maintain face makes Malaysians strive for harmonious relationships. Meeting and Greeting * In general, most Malays are aware of Western ways, so the handshake is normal. There may be a few things to bear in mind : * Malay women may not shake hands with men. * Women can of course shake hands with women. * Men may also not shake hands with women and may bow instead while placing their hand on their heart.? * The Chinese handshake is light and may be rather prolonged. * Men and women may shake hands, although the woman must extend her hand first. * Many older Chinese lower their eyes during the greeting as a sign of respect. * Indians shake hands with members of the same sex. * When being introduced to someone of the opposite sex, nodding the head and smiling is usually sufficient. Among all cultures, there is a general tendency to introduce: * The most important person to the lower ranking person. * The older person to the younger person.? * Women to men. Gift Giving Etiquette Here are some general gift giving etiquette guidelines: * Gift giving to Malays : * If invited to someone’s home for dinner, bring the hostess pastries or good quality chocolates. * Never give alcohol. * Do not give toy dogs or pigs to children. * Do not give anything made of pigskin. * Avoid white wrapping paper as it symbolizes death and mourning. * Avoid yellow wrapping paper, as it is the color of royalty. If you give food, it must be “halal” (meaning permissible for Muslims). * Offer gifts with the right hand only or both hands if the item is large. * Gifts are generally not opened when received. * Gift giving to Chinese : * If invited to someone’s home, bring a small gift of fruit, sweets, or cakes, saying that it is for the children. * A gift is traditionally refused before it is accepted to demonstrate that the recipient is not greedy. * Do not give scissors, knives or other cutting utensils as they indicate a desire to sever the relationship. * Flowers do not make good gifts as they are given to the sick and are used at funerals. Never wrap a gift for a baby or decorate the gift in any way with a stork, as birds are the harbinger of death. * It is best to give gifts in even numbers since odd numbers are unlucky. * Gifts are generally not opened when received. * Gift giving to Indians : * Money should be given in odd numbers. * Offer gifts with the right hand only or both hands if the item is large. * Do not wrap gifts in white or black. * Do not give leather products to a Hindu. * Do not give alcohol unless you are certain the recipient drinks. * Gifts are generally not opened when received.