It is thought that over 81% of the Russian’s are estimated 150 million people speak the country’s official language, Russian, as their first and only language. Most speakers of the minority language are also bilingual speakers of Russian. There are more than 100 minority languages spoken in Russia. The most popular language, Tartar, is the language by more than 3% of the population. Other languages include Ukrainian, Chuvash, Basher, Mordvin and Chechen. These languages are prominent in key regional areas and make up less than 1% of the Russian population.
Society and Culture
Most Russian families live with 2 or 3 generations sharing little space and dependent upon all its members. Most families are small with only one child, because the women work outside the house, but still have sole responsibility of household and childrearing chores. Russians are a proud people. They take great pride in their cultural heritage and being able to flourish in conditions that others cannot. Before the 1930s, Russian life centered on the agriculture, when the land held in common and the head of the household was the province of decision-making. This collective sprit remains today and seen in everyday life, as most Russians will join a table of strangers instead of eating alone at a restaurant. In addition, everyone’s business is also everyone else’s and will stop to tell you are breaking the rules.
The typical greeting is a firm, almost bone-crushing handshake, while making direct eye contact and giving the greeting for the time and day. Females kiss three times on the cheeks, starting with the left and alternating. Russian names are composed of first name (given name), middle name (a version of the fathers first name formed by using ‘-vich’ or ‘-ovich’ and ‘-avna’ or ‘-ovna’ for females. People use their full name for formal situations, friends and close acquaintances use the first and middle and close friends and family use just the first name. When invited to a Russian’s house, arrive no more than 15 minutes late. You will remove your outdoor shoes and given slippers to wear. Dressing well shows respect, so dress in clothing you might wear to the office. Offering to help the host with preparing or cleaning of the meal should be an offer. When dining, you will hold the fork in the left hand and knife in the right. Do not begin eating until the host invites you to start or rest elbows on the table, but hands should be visible at all times. It is polite to soak up gravy and sauce with bread and urged to take second helpings. Men pour drinks for women seated next to them and leaving small amounts of food on the plate indicates that the host provided hospitality. Do not get up from the table until invited to and at formal dinners, the guest of honor is the first to get up.
Russians do not need to establish long-standing personal relationships before doing business, but a good idea is to develop a network of people...