Malta Negotiations and Social Media
Malta flag Attitudes and values.

Attitude towards strangers.

How important is the work-life balance for the Maltese? How do they assess business equity? The following section will introduce you to the essential Maltese attitudes and values ​​and outline their implications for doing business.
During conversations and business meetings, the Maltese partners speak in a lively and enthusiastic manner, but this is only a normal way of expressing themselves. 

Attitude towards strangers.


Maltese language.

In Malta, one speaks above all Maltese, which became the official language, in 1927, only because of the political circumstances having pushed the English and the anglophiles to reduce. In the days of the Order, and even during English rule, it was spoken only in the countryside, while in cities and a good society, Italian and English were the common languages.

Maltese belongs to the group of Semitic languages ​​spoken from the 8th to the 11th century in southern Italy and Sicily. During the reconquest, the romanization of Italy and Sicily was total, but Malta was forgotten. It is today the only Semitic language in Europe written in the Latin alphabet.

Maltese language.


Education, training, and integration.

The education system is based on the British model and public education is provided for a fee. There are many private schools and most of them are Catholic. Since 1974, education has been compulsory for all children between the ages of 6 and 10 (primary education). After passing the admission exams, students follow secondary education and after five years (at the age of 16) they obtain the Secondary Education Certificate (CES). As soon as secondary education ends, students can continue studying at the faculty or, if they do not pass their exams, they can choose to attend an upper secondary school or a private specialized institution. Tertiary education is mainly provided by the University of Malta (UoM), which applies the European system of transferable credits. There are also several tertiary colleges, which provide training in specific fields of study. Malta is also a popular destination all year round for students wishing to learn English as a second language, there are also many program variants available.

Integration of students.

The European and International Office at the University of Malta and the Institute of Tourist Studies offers information on registration procedures, English and course requirements, accommodation, visas, health care, school fees, and financial support. The essential requirements to access a work placement in Malta are: students must be at least 18 years of age and be at the lower or higher university level.

There are also private organizations that deal with internships and work placement programs (including Erasmus and other EU funded programs) providing the opportunity to develop essential skills for getting hired and for gain work experience.

Integration of students.

Housing.

The University of Malta has a Residence that accommodates people who travel to Malta to broaden their academic qualifications, to enjoy an academic vacancy or to visit their colleagues at the University. Some private organizations have their own accommodation system, offering all the facilities at attractive prices. Students can also rent a room in a city apartment and share the costs with other students.

Hostels

Salary.

Students are usually not paid. Those accepted to participate in programs run by private organizations must pay a fee for the support services rendered to them.

There are companies affiliated with the University of Malta, the Institute of Tourist Studies and private organizations which will offer a salary to students with at least 1 year of work experience in the same or related position. Paid jobs are found in Malta in the case of tour operators and in hotels, bars, and restaurants in tourist areas.

Visas.

Citizens of several countries, such as EU member states, the USA and the majority of the countries of the British Crown, do not need a visa to join Malta for a stay of fewer than three months, but for stays longer they must apply for a uniform residence permit.

On the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, there is information regarding visa forms and embassies.

Visas.


Work schedule.

Maltese private-sector workers generally work 40 hours a week. The offices are open from Monday to Friday, generally between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.

In the afternoon, for many activities and retail stores, there are a few closing hours, so you have to look at the opening hours which are generally from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Monday to Saturday. Most stores are only open in the morning on Saturdays. In tourist areas, shops do not normally close at noon, usually remaining open until 10 p.m.

Social media.

From the results of the 7th eCommerce study carried out by the Maltese Communications Authority in September 2010, it follows that 65% of the population uses the Internet, 33% of whom use it for social networking.

The presence of social media activities and business pages is growing; in fact, at the end of 2012, there were over 13 million local business pages on Facebook, of which 8 million were accessed regularly. According to the latest statistic, approximately 150 million people visit Facebook every day; the possibility of increasing your audience there is therefore incomparable compared to print advertising or email marketing.

The 2011 ICON report for Malta on marketing social media for business use as part of their marketing efforts shows that 85% of marketers use social media as a marketing strategy and as an operation to increase their business. Facebook is the preferred tool, but 50% of participants also want to learn more about LinkedIn, Twitter and Foursquare.

The companies involved in the research know that social networks are important for their business, yet they do not know or cannot control and measure the effectiveness of these networks on their activities.

Media

Internet in Malta.

In Malta, more and more hotels, restaurants and bars have free wifi. Better than the 3G and 4G connection which can lead to charges in intensive use, wifi also allows you to benefit from a sometimes higher speed.

Once connected to wifi, you have access to all Internet telephony services. Whatsapp, Messenger (Facebook messaging), Viber, Skype, allow you to call, send messages, photos, and videos to all corners of the planet, at no cost. Just download one of these apps for free to your smartphone. It automatically detects in your contact list those who use the same app.

"Attention hacking! Public wifi has become a colander."

The mobile phone in Malta.

Since June 2017, a European traveler with a package in his country of origin can use his mobile phone at the national rate in all countries of the European Union, without fear of seeing his bill soar. However, ceilings are set by operators to avoid the excess ...
This advantageous agreement signed between the EU and its telecom operators also concerns the consumption of 3G or 4G internet data, the volume of which can be used without additional cost depends on the price of the national package (inquire). In addition, if the traveler resides for several months outside his country, fees may be levied ...

No need to buy a local SIM card to reduce costs. Be careful, you risk not receiving a network in the most remote corners (like the south-west of Malta).

Technology

 Attitude towards bussiness meetings.

Maltese prefer face-to-face meetings, yet video conferencing is becoming an increasingly accepted modality. The very first meetings generally follow a conservative approach and protocol, so it takes time to create a relationship before going to work. Usually, a Maltese who wants to establish contact with a foreign businessman will want to speak to the boss or CEO of the company concerned. At first, there may be a lot of emails and/or phone calls exchanged.

Then, as soon as we establish that there is the possibility of forging a certain business relationship, we set up a meeting face to face. Face to face meetings usually takes place in Malta. When travel is problematic, for example, because one of the parties is not in Malta, video conferencing is an increasingly accepted method of dating. The use of the facilities that video conferences offer does not exclude that at one point one of the parties must travel to take part in face-to-face meetings.

Etiquette in Business.

When organizing and participating in meetings in Malta you have to have in mind the general principles of business etiquette, but in order to be as successful as possible, you also have to take into account local culture and attitudes.

This is particularly valid when we organize the meeting (the date, the place), we establish the content (the agenda), when we know the people (the greetings) and when we decide the right strategies to maintain the relationship during and after the meeting (negotiations, business meals, the granting of gifts).

Bussiness meetings

Establishing contact.

In Malta, the practice is to have personal or professional connections (recommendations, etc.) before requesting an interview with a businessman or woman. If there is no one to introduce you, please send your mail where you request the interview directly to the boss or the president of the company.

E-mail contacts are rapidly becoming an acceptable means of communication for business in order to request an interview or request information about products or services.

There are many networking opportunities for both businesses and residents. Malta organizes regular Toastmasters meetings on the second Tuesday of each month and in 2011 BNI (Business Network International) launched several chapters in Malta.


Face to face.

In order to be able to communicate effectively with the Maltese, it is important to be clear and concise, using short and simple proposals and avoiding idioms or too many colloquialisms.

Eye contact during a meeting is essential, but it's best not to stare at your counterpart for a long time with a fixed eye because it can be seen as indiscreet.

Projects

Living costs.

The cost of living in Malta depends on the lifestyle you want to enjoy. Housing is expensive in Valletta, Sliema and St Julian’s, but in the south of the island, it’s much cheaper. The prices of food and drinks also differ depending on the place: objects sold in tourist areas are more expensive than in other regions. Supermarkets and very small “hole in the wall” stores selling pastizzi, pizza and pies are the perfect choices for those on a budget, thanks to their low prices. Some examples of average prices: a refreshing drink: 1-1.50 euros, water: 0.80 euros, a sandwich in a cafeteria: 1.50-2.00 euros, bread: 0.80 euros.

Electricity.

The electric current in Malta is 230-240 volts, 50 hertz. The sockets have 3 rectangular and non-circular studs. So plan an adapter before leaving.
Of course, we find them there, but sometimes we come across counterfeits. It is, therefore, better to try it at the reseller before using it ... As a last resort, establishments have, in principle, some in stock!

Poste © Fred - Adobe Stock - Mailbox in Malta.

The central post office is located in Valletta (Castile Place), and most cities have a post office. In the villages, it is often a store that acts as a post office. Mainly open between 8:15 a.m. and 3:45 p.m. or 4:30 p.m. (1:30 p.m. in small offices); Saturday, morning only. Safe service, but not always very fast.

Outside post offices, stamps can be obtained from newsagents and all stores that sell postcards. As for the mailboxes, they are numerous and easily recognizable by their red (English) color.

Email

The negotiations.

Maltese negotiators usually know how to listen and do not interrupt their counterparts. Still, expect a lot of questions and requests for explanations at the end of your presentation, because Maltese business people will want to be sure that they understand every aspect of your proposal. Be prepared to spend a lot of time on business transactions and have patience, because in general, the negotiation processes are long. The Maltese partners' way of expressing themselves during negotiations is usually straightforward, as they prefer pragmatism and people who are more practical than emotional. Before concluding an agreement, the Maltese partners will analyze in detail the legal aspects and all the conditions of the written contract, any familiar form or any aspect not mentioned being disapproved. 

Accepting your counterpart's invitation to lunch or dinner is a good method of gaining their trust.

If you are invited to someone's house, accept it with pleasure and do not forget to bring a small gift, for example, chocolate candy or a bottle of wine or champagne.













































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