Argentine Business Structures

Argentinean companies are often what are usually referred to as relationship driven hierarchies.

Argentine society in general is very status conscious. Great emphasis is placed on what social class you belong to, which university you went to, where you are from and where you live. In such a class conscious society, it is hardly surprising that all local business structures would tend to be extremely hierarchical.

Argentinean companies are relationship driven hierarchies which means that the chain of command as outlined in a published organisation chart will not necessarily correspond exactly to the actual internal structure of the business. Who reports to whom and at which point in the chain the decisions are made could depend as much on a complex web of relationships and obligations as it might on the title of an individual. It is usually a very good idea to have a local guide to help you through this complexity – if you haven’t got that local guide, be very observant.

As you would expect in such a hierarchically driven culture, it is important that you are dealing with the right person within an organisation as relatively less power will have been devolved than might be expected in a more matrix organisation. Don’t waste time negotiating with the wrong people. Do some homework in advance on the hierarchy and structure you are likely to encounter.

A brief overview of some key concepts to consider when doing business in Argentina

Written and Produced by Keith Warburton

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This country profile has been produced to give a short overview of some of the key concepts to bear in mind when doing business with contacts in Argentina. It is intended to be an aid to business people who have commercial dealings with counterparties in the country but should not be seen as an exhaustive guide to this topic or as a substitute for more substantial research should there be a need.

With this in mind, we have covered the areas which are key to a better understanding of the cultural mindset underpinning business dealings in Argentina and which are, quite often, extremely different from the approach and thought processes associated with business in other parts of the world.

Therefore this briefing note is broken into short, bite-sized sections on the following topics:

  • Background to business
  • Business Structures
  • Management style
  • Meetings
  • Teamwork
  • Communication
  • Women in business
  • Entertaining
  • Top tips