I arrived in Malta at the end of 2010 from the US with the intention of exploring opportunities as a marketing professional as well as to start a new adventure living in another country. I immediately found the Maltese to be extremely friendly and rarely encountered any language barriers due to the fact that almost 90% of the population speaks English.
I think it is always wise to research and absorb as much information as possible when venturing into new and unexplored territory and being respectful and culturally aware is key in both business as well as life in general. I commend the team here at Passport to Trade 2.0 on presenting everyone with information that raises both awareness and promotes respect.
Importance of trust in Malta
As with many countries, especially in the EU, the way of doing business locally, as well as globally is continually evolving and the goals of the Passport to Trade 2.0 project to provide a platform of European business culture resources is a valuable tool whether researching a continued educational path, expanding career choices or growing your business. As indicated in the Business Relationship section of the Malta guide, you must first develop and earn their trust and invest time and a sincere desire to get to know the people and their business in order to seriously be considered in a formal partnership or business relationship.
“Business relations are based on trust: Maltese people must feel that they know you well before establishing a partnership.”
If you are considering visiting Malta to explore opportunities there are several business networking organizations that I would recommend that are recognized globally such as BNI (Business Networking International) and Toastmasters International. Invitations to attend meetings are fairly easily obtained, visitors are always welcome and are great resources to connect in person to many of the business leaders in the community. The number of groups and communities on networks such as LinkedIn, Facebook, Internations.org and Meetup.org just to name a few for Malta professionals, industry specific or niche markets, and students is continually growing and not only provides additional opportunities to expand your network but also offers social activities to make new friends and ensure balance in work, family and play which is important here in Malta.
There are several thriving expat communities here in Malta that can provide resources and overall support. In additional to expat groups for all foreign nationals It is not uncommon to find country specific groups (Germans, Spanish, Dutch, etc.) that can ease the transition of living and working in a new country by providing referrals, tips, and information that may be more relevant to you. Whether it is missing a type of food or drink from your homeland or just speaking in your native tongue chances are you are not alone in Malta.
I want to extend my appreciation and congratulations to the Passport to Trade 2.0 project and businessculture.org for providing access to these cultural guides and for promoting the possibilities and exciting opportunities that are emerging in Malta and other European markets.
by Irene Kimmel