Leave Out the Beef When Doing Business with Indians

About 80% of India’s population is Hindu.  And, although some of these people eat meat, they nonetheless do not eat beef as the cow is considered a holy animal.


The Pizza Hut in Ahmedabad (of which the majority population is vegetarian) dishes out only vegetarian pizzas. And even McDonalds in India does not serve beef burgers!  Yes, you can have a veggie burger or a chicken burger but not the traditional “Big Mac” that McDonalds is known for. And, seemingly, this is a clever decision on the part of McDonalds:  many Hindus will not even eat at a joint that serves beef.


The moral of the story?  When travelling to India or working with Indian colleagues in your homeland, beef is not something to offer or order at a meal.  By showing you are sensitive to the religious beliefs and local tastes of Indians, your credibility as an international leader with this group is sure to surge.



Dedicated to propelling desired change, Colleen Slaughter, a native of Kentucky, specializes in leadership development and executive coaching for women. She has spent over 20 years – 13 of them in Europe – working with and consulting individuals and organizations from over 35 countries. In addition to her geographical span, Colleen has driven change across an array of companies in various industries, including: professional services, pharmaceutical, telecom, automotive, high tech, consumer products, and diversified manufacturing.Capitalizing on that experience, on her MBA from the prestigious HEC Paris, and on her extensive coach training from the Newfield Network, in 2009 Colleen founded Authentic Leadership International. Through her firm, she lives out her passion of helping people in international leadership roles achieve lasting, satisfying change by aligning themselves with their true desires and talents. Colleen has dual American and Irish nationalities, shares her life with a German national, has visited over 25 countries, and speaks fluent French, with a working knowledge of Spanish and German.Colleen is a member of the International Coach Federation (ICF) and the 2011 Vice President/President-elect of the ICF – Raleigh Area Chapter. She is a volunteer Career Coach at the Triangle Chapter of Dress for Success and is a regular presenter on what true, authentic leadership looks like and how international female leaders can integrate those traits into their own professional and personal lives.

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