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Things to Know When Doing Business in Latin America

Among the most critical decisions your company will make is in choosing the right person to represent you abroad, and this holds true if you are attempting to do business with Latin American partners. In order to help you be guided in selecting the point person to represent your company abroad, here are some ideas for you to read more so that you will learn and will avoid making mistakes about this decision.

First of all is to realize that your representative may not necessarily need to have a Hispanic name and background because Latin Americans are a diverse population, and thus do not expect favoritism or discrimination if your point person does not have these qualifications.

Another tip is to be aware that English is still the language of business in Latin America, with an interpreter to help further would be better, although having a bilingual representative could be a plus. Note that the friendship and business relationship with the Latin American company will further be improved if your point person has good conversational skills since he or she would be able to communicate well with the hosts.

Next is to realize that your representative will have to do everything he or she can to get to know the hosts in order to slowly build a relationship of trust, over being highly skilled or knowledgeable or competent in your area of business.

You should then be looking for some characteristics of a good representative that you can further develop in the person. So ideally, your company’s representative must be flexible, very patient and most of all a people person.

By being a flexible representative, we mean someone who enjoys new experiences, who is a bit adventurous, and who is adaptable to surroundings not familiar to him or her. The person must be willing to accept cultures foreign to him or her, available to travel on successive trips in order to seal a contract, and will act as the point person during the whole process, from the initial stage to closing the contract and then to continuously offer customer service afterwards when the business relationship has established.

Your representative should recognize that patience is a virtue, especially in Latin America the pace of life is slower considerably. Therefore, there must be an awareness by your representative that it will not be fast to develop relationships, and he or she has to do this with a genuine and personal disposition to develop the friendly relationship with the Latin American company.

Know that Latin Americans appreciate intellectual conversations on broad range of topics, thus your point person must have the intellectualism to engage with the hosts in social situations, considering he or she will be spending lots of time with them.

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