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  #21  
Old 12.09.2011, 22:07
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

Of course it cuts both ways.

If you want to give out cold vibes towards a Swiss that you're on first name terms with, or you want to just distance yourself from them (even just temporarily) because they annoyed you during a meeting at work or for some other reason - this will definitely do the trick.........

Stop saying their first name (after 'sali' or 'ciao') when you greet them.

Some (not all) will hate it.
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  #22  
Old 12.09.2011, 22:09
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

Don't eat the yellow snow.
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  #23  
Old 12.09.2011, 23:28
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

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1. Show up on time, neither before nor after but ON TIME, especially in the Swiss German part. In the Suisse Romandie its ok to be fashionably late by about 15 mins.
In Bern you should be 5 to 10 minutes early for a meeting or an interview at a business or company, giving the impression you are keen to meet them.

Privately you should be 5 minutes late so as not to imply stress on the hostess.

Privately always take a small bunch of flowers and chocolates or biscuits for any children. Taking wine is not really a good idea, the host chooses the wine for the meal, not you. Perfect would be something from your own country, that would be appreciated, American brownies, Scottish shortbread, Australian brown sugar etc.

Use the Sie / Vous form of address until invited by the older person to use the Du / Tu form.
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  #24  
Old 13.09.2011, 08:49
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

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May have been covered before but I couldn't find it.

Mine was 'always look a Swiss person in the eyes when you make cheers'.

Come to think of it, it's perfectly logical - you're either drinking to their health or wishing them 'Happy Birthday' or congratulating them maybe for some other milestone or happy event.

i.e. 'Don't look at the glass'.
I'm crosseyed. What should I do?
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Old 13.09.2011, 08:57
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

Don't argue with us; you're invariably wrong, but just in case you're right, then we'll point out that you're a foreigner here and lower down the human league table, so do pay some respect to your superiors.
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  #26  
Old 13.09.2011, 08:59
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

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Learn their names upon first introduction, and be sure to use them when you say goodbye.

The best way to handle that, of course, is to let someone else do the round of handshaking just before you and keep an ear cocked for the names they use.
I find it really difficult to pronounce German names at present (currently in UK). Is it better to just have a go and potentially pronounce it slightly wrong or should I wait until I've got better at this?
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  #27  
Old 13.09.2011, 10:21
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

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I find it really difficult to pronounce German names at present (currently in UK). Is it better to just have a go and potentially pronounce it slightly wrong or should I wait until I've got better at this?
If we're talking about an actual face-to-face meeting, I would say definitely have a go first, then sit back and listen to a 'profi' - they'll be in their element. At sometime during the conversation they may (covertly) test you to see if you can finally say it. At the very latest when you say goodbye you should be able to pronounce some recognisable rendition of their name. Of course if you get it spot on the first time - respect.

All in complete fun (of course).
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Old 13.09.2011, 10:52
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

In my time living in Holland, nearly all dutch names were new to me. So when I met someone with a name I'd never heard of, I'd ask how do you spell it, then repeat the spelling out loud to the person, then the name. It helps to remember that name better, makes sure you understood it correctly the first time, and makes it less dramatic to re-check later that you remember the spelling/pronunciation correctly. It's ok to try hard to pronounce a name right, even if it doesn't come out perfect!

Examples: Sjoerd, Ruud, Marinus, Joost

I now do the same with all new names I've never heard before (Huyn Jin Lee, Reinhart, Silli,...)
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  #29  
Old 13.09.2011, 11:19
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

Don't smile too much when meeting someone for the first time.
They will invariably think you are the village idiot.
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Old 13.09.2011, 11:51
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

When drinking beer: every time you want to take a zip of beer ,smack the glass together and grunt" Prost"
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  #31  
Old 13.09.2011, 11:54
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

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Don't smile too much when meeting someone for the first time.
They will invariably think you are the village idiot.
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  #32  
Old 13.09.2011, 11:57
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

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I'm crosseyed. What should I do?
Buy them 2 drinks each.
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  #33  
Old 13.09.2011, 13:12
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

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Of course it cuts both ways.

If you want to give out cold vibes towards a Swiss that you're on first name terms with, or you want to just distance yourself from them (even just temporarily) because they annoyed you during a meeting at work or for some other reason - this will definitely do the trick.........

Stop saying their first name (after 'sali' or 'ciao') when you greet them.

Some (not all) will hate it.
Not sure if the 20 to 30 somethings will catch the snub as they do not really care about bienscéance and etiquette (regardless of nationality). The message would probably be politely and quietly acknowledged by the 40 + though.
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  #34  
Old 13.09.2011, 13:19
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

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Don't smile too much when meeting someone for the first time.
They will invariably think you are the village idiot.
Can't say this is true.... I smile easily and do not pay attention to gender or nationality. It's usually received with a bit of surprise but always pleasantly.

.... question of liking people for who they are, as they are, I suppose.
maybe I don't really follow the usual standard approach.
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Old 13.09.2011, 13:31
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

Yes - I smile a lot too - naturally - but I have noticed some surprise at this approach....
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  #36  
Old 13.09.2011, 14:15
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

No one told me about this one and it took me a while but ... greet the other people in a waiting room (dr, dentist .... anywhere actually) with a "gruezi miteinander". I still feel like a plonker doing it but it is necessary if you do not wish to receive filthy looks!! Same goes for lifts - saying hello and goodbye when you get in a lift with strangers :-)) I love the Swiss!
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  #37  
Old 13.09.2011, 14:16
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

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Don't smile too much when meeting someone for the first time.
They will invariably think you are the village idiot.
This is hilarious .... and soooo true!
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  #38  
Old 13.09.2011, 14:25
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

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In Bern you should be 5 to 10 minutes early for a meeting or an interview at a business or company, giving the impression you are keen to meet them.

Privately you should be 5 minutes late so as not to imply stress on the hostess.

Privately always take a small bunch of flowers and chocolates or biscuits for any children. Taking wine is not really a good idea, the host chooses the wine for the meal, not you. Perfect would be something from your own country, that would be appreciated, American brownies, Scottish shortbread, Australian brown sugar etc.

Use the Sie / Vous form of address until invited by the older person to use the Du / Tu form.
This is not true, especially in the wine growing regions; you never open wine somebody brings you unless they insist, it's shows that you don't have enough and were relying on them, good wine needs to rest before being opened anyway.
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  #39  
Old 13.09.2011, 15:05
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

Who needs social etiquette anyhow! One can live without that.
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  #40  
Old 13.09.2011, 15:47
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Re: Best tip you ever received about social etiquette with the Swiss?

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If we're talking about an actual face-to-face meeting, I would say definitely have a go first, then sit back and listen to a 'profi' - they'll be in their element. At sometime during the conversation they may (covertly) test you to see if you can finally say it. At the very latest when you say goodbye you should be able to pronounce some recognisable rendition of their name. Of course if you get it spot on the first time - respect.

All in complete fun (of course).
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In my time living in Holland, nearly all dutch names were new to me. So when I met someone with a name I'd never heard of, I'd ask how do you spell it, then repeat the spelling out loud to the person, then the name. It helps to remember that name better, makes sure you understood it correctly the first time, and makes it less dramatic to re-check later that you remember the spelling/pronunciation correctly. It's ok to try hard to pronounce a name right, even if it doesn't come out perfect!

Examples: Sjoerd, Ruud, Marinus, Joost

I now do the same with all new names I've never heard before (Huyn Jin Lee, Reinhart, Silli,...)
Cool thanks I shall try
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