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Something very important that British businesspeople need to grasp and understand when dealing with Latin American or Spanish clients is that feelings and relationships play a huge role for them. Therefore, your primary focus should be the building of personal relationships with them. Remembering birthdays, local important celebrations that influence their business will be seen as a positive attitude. In Latin American countries: El Día de los Muertos in Mexico, Carnaval de Rio in Brazil, Inti Raimi in Peru, El Festival del Tango in Argentina; in addition, each 22 Latin American countries celebrate massively their Independence Day. In Spain, Semana Santa, La Tomatina, Dia de Los Reyes Magos are big celebrations.

It is very important to begin negotiations only after you have developed a certain level of trust and a personal relationship with your Spanish speaking clients. Business meetings will normally begin with discussing general matters and catching up with each other on a personal level to build and establish a solid working relationship.

As Spanish speaking countries people are generally more extrovert in character, it is important to follow a set agenda so that the discussion does not stray too far from the topic. You should ensure that your presentation is clear and concise so that everyone in the meeting is able to follow and understand the discussion.

As Hispanic regions are hierarchical countries, the final decisions are only made by the most senior positions in the company. You may never actually meet the person who ultimately makes the decision concerning your proposals if you are dealing with a big company. But that won’t affect your business dealings as long as you understand this cultural matter.

Don’t expect your contracts to be signed in a short period of time. Spanish speaking businesspeople are very thorough and highly likely to review every detail to make certain all the commitments and implications are fully understood.

Be sure that once the contract is approved and signed, you will not have future issues regarding agreements of business.

Martha Jesty

Spanish Translator, Interpreter & Teacher of Spanish-English,

Specialist in Spanish, Latin American and British business cultures

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