Tip 11
It is important that cordial relations are maintained at all times - even when things start to get difficult. Do not become emotional or angry as this will reflect badly on your character and could result in you losing face in Filipino eyes.
Tip 12
As Filipinos do not wish to appear confrontational, you may interpret their politeness as agreement. Do not assume that 'yes' means 'yes' or that a happy, smiling face signifies progress.
Tip 13
English language levels are very high in the Philippines and, therefore, communication flows very easily at a superficial level. It is dangerous, however, to take everything you hear at face value. Look for the coded messages behind the words that are spoken.
Tip 14
Bureaucracy is all-pervasive and slow. It may be necessary for 'gifts' to be given to government officials in order to speed up proceedings. This process is best left to a local representative who understands the system.
Tip 15
Take a supply of small gifts with you to the Philippines to help oil the progress of the relationship-building process. Remember that gifts should always be wrapped.
Tip 16
Women should encounter few difficulties when working in the Philippines, so long as they maintain a professional and reserved manner. Overly assertive women could alienate male colleagues.
Tip 17
Dress code tends to be reasonably formal. Remember to pack lightweight clothing and an umbrella can also be useful.
Tip 18
About 5% of the population are Muslim (mainly from the Southern parts of the country). When travelling in these areas be aware of local Islamic taboos relating to dress, diet and alcohol. (Women should dress very modestly.)
Tip 19
Do not make jokes about the Philippines, religious issues or at the expense of any individual.
Tip 20
Entertaining is an important business tool and many Filipino contacts will expect the business process to include a good deal of 'after hours' work. When entertaining, do it well and if inviting guests, ensure that you pay the bill.