Doing Business In The New Latin America / Edition 1

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From Tijuana to Tierra del Fuego, Latin America is remarkably misunderstood, often viewed merely as a source of cheap labor, where corrupt politicians and drug lords run rampant. As a result, many—especially smaller—U.S. businesses are missing out on lucrative opportunities to expand their operations into this dynamic region, home to over 500 million consumers. Drawing from over 30 years of firsthand experience and research, Dr. Thomas Becker helps readers overcome these stereotypes and presents a concise and authoritative approach to conducting business in Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean, and South America.

Featuring current economic, geographic, and demographic data, illustrative case examples, and scores of practical tips, the book delivers a wealth of insights for understanding market conditions, assessing competitive opportunities, and negotiating successful deals. Chapters on the history and culture of Latin America explain the context for how business relationships are established and sustained, and illustrate the profound changes that are positioning the region for renewed growth—particularly for small- and medium-sized U.S. businesses. Subsequent chapters cover the details of business practices—from choosing distribution partners and managing logistics to conducting yourself in meetings and trade shows to getting paid and protecting intellectual property. Integrating strategy and tactics, the author shows you how to separate fact from fiction and earn a passport to profit in a region that is breaking with its past.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Well-written, interesting, and useful, this volume on doing business in Latin America contains six chapters organized in three sections: People, Places, and Possibilities, Why and How Latin Americans Do Business Differently, and The Art of Making and Keeping the Deal. . . . This well-organized work will be useful to business people and economists interested in the Latin American market, and the balanced economic history survey of the region will appeal to economists, bankers, and finance specialists. In addition, the discussion of the art of making and keeping a business deal active will be valuable to managers and prospective investors. . . . Recommended. Upper-division undergraduate through professional collections." - Choice

"Becker concisely describes the cultures and practices of Latin America, highlighting emerging opportunities in the growth region of Mexico, Central America, the Caribbean, and South America. He also describes the untapped Latin American market that exists within the borders of the United States. . . . Becker provides the reader with the initial tools and thought patterns necessary to do business in the new Latin America. This book is a must read for entrepreneurs seeking opportunities there." - Multicultural Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780275981327
  • Publisher: ABC-CLIO, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 11/1/2004
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 278
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.69 (d)

Meet the Author

Thomas H. Becker is an economic development authority and management trainer specializing in Latin America. He has lived, operated businesses, or worked in 16 Latin American countries, and currently serves as advisor to government agencies, private businesses, universities, and NGOs. His academic background includes degrees in Latin American American Studies and a PhD in International Business. He has served on the business faculty of five universities in the U.S. and Latin America, has written over 100 articles and book chapters in English and Spanish, and is a former president and managing director of the Business Association of Latin American Studies.

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Table of Contents

People, Places, and Possibilities

Where and What Is Latin America?

Latin America Means Business

Why and How Latin Americans Do Business Differently

The Historic Legacy

Using Cultural Literacy to Hone Your Competitive Edge

The Art of Making and Keeping the Deal

Negotiating and Selling Tips

How to Avoid Letting Your Good Latin American Deal Go South

Appendix: Information Resources

Notes and References


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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 4 )
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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2006

    Small USA based business explores opportunity in Latin America

    Thanks to Dr. Becker for explaining in practical and action oriented detail the growth opportunities in Latin America for my small USA based company. After stumbling onto our first Mexican client, my team and I thought we better learn more about how Latin American business operates. Becker clearly highlights the economic and cultural factors that shape doing business in the region, as well as provides many ¿real-world¿ tips on how to spot opportunities, avoid pitfalls, and develop long term, profitable customers. An excellent book that provides current market intelligence on Latin America in an easy-to-read form. Chris Slocum

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 13, 2005

    The best book on doing business in Latin America. Period.

    I highly recommend this book for anyone doing business in Latin America. I recently expanded my business into Central and South America and was desperately in need of education regarding the business practices and social customs of these new markets. I am usually more critical in my reviews, but Doing Business in the New Latin America exceeded my expectations tenfold, so please forgive my enthusiasm. I was expecting a dry and analytical tome in the style of the two other books I had already read: Winning Strategies for the New Latin Markets and Latin America's Economy: Diversity, Trends, and Conflicts. These books were beneficial in their own way, but Doing Business in the New Latin America is in an entirely different league. With only six chapters and 236 pages, you might think that the scope of the subject matter would be limited, but Thomas Becker has managed to cover every base by presenting only the most cogent and relevant material. This book is written with a casual professionalism--I felt as if I were having a conversation with a well-informed friend. Topics that elsewhere are lackluster and uninspired are here presented with enthusiasm and even humor. This book was actually fun to read. I began speed-reading the text, but quickly found so much worthy content that I finished the book word-for-word. My second time through, I marked up the pages for later reference, only to discover that I marked up almost every page so much that my business partner had to order his own copy. The chapter: Using Cultural Literacy to Hone Your Competitive Edge (alone worth the price of the book and the investment of time) explains not only the current and relevant customs and rituals of Latins, but gives them context by explaining the origins and evolution of those customs. I found these stories to be as fascinating as they were useful. I was horrified to learn that many of my new Latin relationships were already tainted by numerous easily-avoided faux pas and that I had missed opportunities that this book made clear to me. Still, my business has only begun to capitalize on this vast new market and the lessons I learned in this book will, I¿m certain, be incredibly beneficial. The entertaining quality of this book does not overshadow its pragmatism. There are negotiating and selling tips (that are contrary to anything you¿ve ever learned in the U.S.), communication methods, risk avoidance strategies, management practices, and brilliant applications of old-fashioned business approaches to an entirely new market. I particularly enjoyed the contrasts between the business styles and social norms of our two cultures, often presented in crystal-clear tabular format. I was surprised to learn, for instance, that the U.S. fascination with individualism is not well received in Latin America, where collectivism is the norm, especially among workers. The comprehensive index makes this book an excellent reference source. A Latin associate mentioned guayabera (a style of shirt) in an e-mail referring to dress codes and I found four references to this word in the book. I learned so much from this book that I came away feeling like an expert in Latin American business. I won¿t say that this is the only book you should read on the subject, but I will say that if you were only going to read one, this should be it.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 28, 2005

    What We Wish We'd Read Four Years Ago!

    I just finished reading 'Doing Business In the New Latin America.' Why wasn't this book available sooner? It pinpoints many of the hassles and heartaches our company went through - and still goes through - as we worked for almost four years to grow small orders into large accounts in Mexico and Central America. Whereas other books on doing business abroad seem either to be written for large multinationals or are weak on practical advice, this one contains the kind of hardhitting cost-saving and time-saving tips that fit the needs of our medium size company. I don't think you will find anything like it available anywhere else.

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