Asinta Business Etiquette Insight: Spain

Looking to set up a new business in Spain? Our business etiquette insights can help establish good relations with your Spanish colleagues:

a) Trust and personal relationships are the cornerstone of business in Spain. Spaniards prefer face-to- face communication rather than written or telephone contact. The way you present yourself is of critical importance as the Spanish place great importance on the character of the person with whom they do business. Be modest if you speak about your achievements, qualifications etc. Once you develop a relationship, your Spanish colleagues’ allegiance will remain with you even if you subsequently switch companies.

b) Appointments are mandatory and should be made well in advance, preferably by telephone or email. Reconfirm in writing or by telephone the week before. Not all businesspeople speak English so check beforehand if an interpreter may be needed. Make sure all your printed material is available in English and Spanish, including your business cards. Agendas are often used but may not be followed too strictly during the meeting.

c) Hierarchy and rank are important to the Spanish so make sure you deal with people of similar rank to your own. Decision-making comes from the top of the company, so you may never meet the person who ultimately makes the final decision. Spaniards are very thorough and will review every minute detail to make sure it is understood. They expect both sides to strictly adhere to the terms of a contract.

Are you considering doing business in Spain? Asinta’s Partner in the area, SARE can answer any questions you might have. Simply drop them a line via their contact page to get the conversation started.