Spanish Teams

Individualistic, hierarchical and multi-active, Spaniards often find the team role a difficult one.

Although Spaniards rarely say that they are in competition with colleagues, they frequently express jealousy of colleagues and that is not a healthy emotion in a team environment.

Older managers, who have been used to a more directive management style, can find the concepts of empowerment and open collaboration alien to their approach.

Teams, where they do exist, are more likely to consist of a group of individuals reporting to a strong leader and acting on his instructions. Communication between team members might even be through the boss to avoid confusion or duplication of activities.

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

Written and Produced by Keith Warburton

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Overview

Spain has had a rollercoaster ride over the past twenty years from an economic perspective. The country went through a classic boom and bust scenario. The Spanish population felt the highs and lows of a rapid growth in living standards only to be then battered by a massive downturn leading to wage stagnation and record levels of unemployment – especially amongst the younger generation.

Things seem to be picking up however and the hope is that Spain has weathered the economic storm and is poised for a period of solid, manageable GDP growth which can help to drive the country into a more prosperous and sustainable future. Some painful lessons have been learnt the hard way and future economic consolidation will be built on stronger foundations going forward.
If you are thinking of doing business in Spain, the economic signals are positive and now is probably a good time to approach the market. The country has a highly educated workforce and a strong middle-class consumer base. As a key member of the European Union, Spain has well established trading links throughout Europe. Add this to its position as ‘the gateway to South America’ and its geographic proximity to North Africa and Spain starts to look like a highly attractive market.

However, if you are thinking of doing business with Spain it is extremely important that you do some homework before diving into any initial relationship-building activities. What are the key motivators of potential partners or clients in Spain? How are decisions arrived at and what is the best approach in terms of communication? Studying Spanish business culture will help you make the right impressions from the outset.

This country profile provides an overview of some of the key aspects of Spanish business culture in a concise, easy to follow-format. The document includes information on:

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