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Causes of Costa Rica Business Failure

Costa Rica News – New businesses are started nearly every day by entrepreneurs in Costa Rica.  Most of these ventures end up in failure.  The Chamber of Exporters of Costa Rica (CADEXCO) conducted a study which determined the biggest reason for failed businesses in Costa Rica.

interntational business in costa rica 1Cultures are very different and executives should take this into account when negotiating in order to understand their target market and it’s behavior. This will help the executive adapt to the business environment needed to get the close.

Thinking outside the box and adapting are not many Costa Ricans strong points…..change is a 4 letter word to a Tico.

The Chamber of Exporters of Costa Rica (CADEXCO) determined that the lateness is the biggest reason for the failure of negotiations with Costa Rican businesses. According to the Chamber, local entrepreneurs should improve the timeliness, when getting back with a proposal to a counter party. This is stating the obvious! Tardiness or not even responding is a Costa Rican characteristic that will frustrate any person that has grown up in normal business negotiations or in fact just has respect for another’s time. It is just rude and unprofessional to show up late to a meeting or miss a deadline but you will find out very quickly in Costa Rica, this is the norm both in business and in personal interactions.

It is important that employers are informed of the culture that comes with business interactions. Personal appearance and body language influence the first impression on first contact. You will usually win or lose the business deal in many cases in the first 2 minutes of the first interaction.

Another barrier to overcome is the gender, as sometimes dealing with certain cultures they prefer dealing with men.

Other aspects of a successful negotiation are:

  • Investigate the counter party in business
  • Establish negotiation objectives, taking into account the starting points and breakpoints.
  • You have to manage personal emotions or economic pressures of the business. Never throw your breaking point at the start of trading, this may immediately terminate the process.
  • Set the strategy and tactics of negotiation.
  • Search results Win / Win, where in addition to a good business achieve long-term relationships.

Although these tips are well understood by many executives operating on a global scale, it is not taught in most universities in Costa Rica.  International business has to be learned before each and every negotiation you have. Study the culture and do research before you head to that meeting.


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