After a bumpy, stop-and-go cab ride from the airport and getting lost in what I’ve come to realize is one of the largest, sprawling cities (more than 8.5 times the area of Washington, D.C.), we arrived safe and sound at our hotel in the Pinheiros district of São Paulo.
Once we got settled, we walked around the area, grabbed a bite to eat and then visited the offices of our Brazilian GLOBALHealthPR partners, Tino – Projetos em Comunicação. Our Brazilian partners have been such gracious and fun hosts, welcoming us to their office and city.
Between learning the basics of Portuguese (obrigada! vs. obrigado!) and preparing for client meetings and the actual annual meeting sessions, we’ve been staying busy (but definitely not going hungry!). Here’s an update on a few of the top things I was looking forward to:
Participating in client/prospect meetings to discuss business growth among the Latin American region
We’ve taken the opportunity of our partners gathering in one city to coordinate meetings with current and prospective clients. Yesterday, GLOBALHealthPR’s Latin America team, including partners from Brazil, Argentina and Mexico, met with one of our existing clients in the consumer health care space to make an introduction to partners he hadn’t yet met and discuss new opportunities. The night before, we enjoyed a lovely – though nearly four hours long – dinner with him. Apparently, late dinner with clients (and even later dinner with friends) is typical in Latin America. As a result, our partners in Brazil don’t usually start in the work day until 10 a.m.
Personally, I was energized hearing the agency principles explain the value of their own firms and GLOBALHealthPR as a whole. It really helped me recognize the value that our Network can provide through its truly independent nature, high team retention rate and specific focus on health care across scientific, professional and consumer audiences.
Experiencing Brazilian culture – especially the dance, food and drink!
I’ll start with the food, but don’t worry: there will be more on caipirinhas and the dancing later. We’ve had meat dishes at least twice a day, including an a
mazing lamb dish that is the house specialty at a nearby restaurant and a delicious Brazilian cut of beef known as picanha. In case our waist line wasn’t feeling it yet, we’ve been enjoying chocolate in many delightful forms: chocolate stirred into espresso, rich truffles, chocolate drizzled bread and chocolate mousse covered in whipped cream. We’ve also been introduced to several non-chocolate traditional Brazilian deserts that have been amazing too. According to our partners in Brazil, Brazilian sweets are typically more sweet that American treats.
Overall, I must say, it’s been a pretty sweet trip so far… stay tuned for more updates from the 2012 AGM in “Sampa”!