Before I went to Istanbul this time, I wrote emails to many, many people I wanted to meet. I must admit that those people haven’t ever seen me so I was not very lucky in getting answers. But doesn’t matter because I learnt some important lessons:
1. Be patient when making contacts in Turkey.
2. Emails don’t really work. Turkish people want to see you face to face and talk to you. If they can’t look into your eyes, they are not interested and tend not to trust you.
3. Other than Germans, Turkish people don’t like to make appointments, they prefer to be flexible on that, so you better go there directly and surprise them. They will not say no to you once you show up but offer you a cup of tea.
4. Istanbul is so big, distances are long and people are overloaded with business opportunities. So you might focus on smaller Turkish cities to be successful.
5. Turkish business people are very competitive. It costs them to understand that someone is just interested in making good contacts and sharing knowledge, where maybe in the end stands a benefit for both parties – or just a nice cup of tea.
6. Once they have seen you and talked to you, they are the nicest people on earth and put you in contact asap with friends and family members to make sure you will succeed in your business!
Well this was what happened in the end and so I finally had some really nice and interesting encounters.