Chicago Business Tips
(Chicago, Illinois - IL, USA)
Chicago's financial and business district is full of many of the world's oldest skyscrapers, with fine examples of early skyscraper architecture. These impressive business structures include the Chicago Board of Trade Building, which was completed in 1930 and is not only one of the finest Art Deco skyscrapers in the world, but is also home to the world's oldest and busiest futures exchange market.
Business Hours and General Etiquette
In both dress and manners, Americans can be less formal than Europeans, although normal business courtesies should still be observed. The degree of formality necessary depends upon the actual nature of the business, with financial and legal professions being more formal than computer and media organizations. Although both men and women may still wear suits, short sleeve shirts are acceptable in the summer.
Business hours in the Chicago bay area are usually from Monday to Friday, between 09:00 to 17:00, although some city offices may close slightly later. Many shops are open longer and often throughout the weekends, and some supermarkets are open 24 hours. Banks generally open from 08:00 to 16:00 and on one day of the week until late in the evening. On Saturdays, local banks are often open until midday.
Working lunches are a popular way to do business in Chicago and Americans are quick to use first-name terms. Some exclusive restaurants have a strict dress code, although a more informal, yet presentable dress code is acceptable. Drinks or dinner is a popular way to end the hard working week.
A brief and friendly handshake is usually the customary greeting in this business community. New acquaintances are often addressed on first name terms.
Many restaurants now have a strict 'no smoking' policy, although some tend to cater for smokers in different areas. Most offices are now nonsmoking and as this is currently a sensitive subjective in America, it is best to only smoke when in the company of like-minded people.