Networking may get your foot in the door in the United States, but networking is the door when you’re in Brazil. What do I mean by this? Brazilians almost always prefer to conduct business with someone that is familiar with or knows a native. This embodies one main principle about Brazilian business practices: the reputation of the business doesn’t matter – only that of the person.

Therefore, bragging about your company will not get you very far in cementing a business proposition. In fact, appearing more likeable to your Brazilian counterparts will help you go far. Also, since the person matters more when doing business in Brazil, be sure to keep the same personnel working on the same project for the entire duration to establish rapport with your Brazilian co-workers.

Nevertheless, if a deal has been made (due to your likeability!), don’t count on a contract being drawn up immediately afterward. A handshake may suffice, but be wary of some areas in Brazil since they do not necessarily consider signed agreements as binding.