What is the business Practices and Etiquette in Korea?
When meeting a Korean business person for the first time, it is best to be introduced by a third party, rather than introducing yourself. Shaking hands is now common even among Koreans. A bow may or may not precede the handshake.
The exchange of business cards is a vital part of a first meeting. It is also important to emphasize one's title so that, right away, the correct authority, status and rank are established and understood. The recent Western trend toward eliminating titles has created some problems for some companies when dealing with Korean businesses as Koreans generally prefer to deal only with someone of equal rank as opposed to someone of lower rank.
Use both hands if possible when presenting and receiving a business card. If that is not possible, use your right hand and support your right elbow with your left hand. Business cards should be treated as an extension of the person. Therefore you should read it carefully and then place it on the table in front of you. To put someone's card in your pocket or to write on it, etc. is to show disrespect to the person.
It is important to make an appointment a few weeks in advance of a business meeting. Most business meetings are scheduled mid-morning (10 AM to 12 PM) or mid-afternoon (between 2 and 4 PM). Punctuality is important as it is a sign of respect. If you realize that you may be a little late, it is best to call ahead to say so.
To enhance communication and reduce the possibility of misunderstanding due to language, you may find it helpful to send written materials - brochures, marketing materials, proposals, etc. - in writing to your Korean counterpart some time prior to the meeting.