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If you’re planning on buckling down, forming the company, doing the paperwork and getting the business insurance, Chicago is an excellent city to set up for business. The Windy City brings bourgeois money and taste to the hardworking business culture of the Midwest.
Getting started in Chicago will probably be less of culture shock than getting started in other American cities due to the relatively moderate social environment of the city. It is a little more stable and less decadent than many of the cities on the East and West coasts. Chicagoans tend to be business casual, and don’t go to work in a T-shirt and jeans. There is an emphasis in function over fashion, so it is perfectly acceptable to bundle up in boots or earflaps in the winter. The weather in Chicago is not the most pleasant, but you will not hear the residents complain about it much; there is a strong air of confidence about being able to handle whatever mother nature throws at you. Chicagoans also tend to be a bit more conservative in their habits. Drinking lavishly will be looked at as a sign of recklessness. Going out for dinner and drinks tends to be a planned affair rather than an off-the-cuff event. And of course, Chicagoans are very passionate about their sports teams; getting on the wrong side of a Cubs vs. White Sox debate will not be pleasant.
Punctuality is key. Because most business is done in the tight downtown area and within walking distance, there is little reason to be late. You will definitely want to phone ahead if you are going to be more than ten minutes late. Business deals tend to be very cautious. When doing business it is best to be straightforward and simple. Chicagoans react suspiciously to embellished language and many of the sales tactics that impress San Franciscans and Miami residents will not impress the folks here.
Fortunately, doing business in Chicago is made easy due to the hardworking culture and the healthy assortment of business resources that are available in the city. Entrepreneurs will find a wealth of tools such as the reasonable legal firms, the down-to-earth lenders and brokers, the straightforward advisors and the good companies for liability and business insurance Chicago has to offer to be incredibly reliable in setting up their businesses there. The Windy City has an enduring culture that makes a business built on sound practices very easy to execute.