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Business Spanish: Interview with Dr. Bolaños, author of "¿De Dónde Venimos, Guatemala?"

We first met Dr. Bolaños in episode 10 of this podcast, where he presented his consulting business and we learned about optimization modeling. Today, Dr. Bolaños shares how he came to speak seven languages, then provides an introduction to his new book De Dónde Venimos, Guatemala? Our topic today is two-fold: In the first part of our interview with Dr. Bolaños, he recounts his journey learning multiple languages, gives some background on the history of the Spanish language, and provides advice for foreign language learners. In the second part, Dr. Bolaños discusses his country’s ranking in cross-cultural management concepts such as power distance, uncertainty avoidance, and individualism. This finding encouraged his further research and publication of his book: ¿De Dónde Venimos, Guatemala? H e relates these cultural concepts to Guatemala’s pre-Colombian society and examines the country’s present economy in light of its history and culture. Terms and phrases from this interview: El economista: economist

Conectar de la misma manera: to connect the same way

El mundo se va a hacer pequeño: the world is going to become small

Todo se va a desarrollar, y cuando esto se desarrolle, aquel que hable idiomas va a tener abiertas las puertas del mundo: Everything is going to develop (airplanes, communications) and when it develops, he who speaks languages will have the doors to the world (opened) [subjunctive cuando+future, undefined person] sacar mi doctorado = to get, earn my doctorate degree (sacar + título, pasaporte, etc.)

el problema es encontrar una idea original que nadie haya estudiado y que además sea una hipótesis, que sea relevante, que sea importante para el mundo (use of subjunctive)= the idea is to find an original idea that no one has studied and that moreover is a hypothesis, that’s relevant, that’s important for the world

el país más individualista = the most individualistic country

desde el punto de vista de las decisiones = from the decision-making point of view

el más colectivista = the most collectivist (country)

un patrón = pattern

la distancia al poder = power distance

los poseedores de la verdad = keepers of truth

¡cómo no patrón! = of course, boss (you lead, I follow)

La aversión a la incertidumbre = uncertainty avoidance

La forma de pensar = mindset, way of thinking

La tesis = thesis, dissertation La obsidiana = obsidian

El silicio = silicon

El mayor productor = the largest producer

El centro commercial = center of commerce, shopping center

“cómo eso tiene un impacto económico y cómo eso tiene un impacto en la cultura” (reference to the history)

Cómo es posible que un imperio tan sofisticado acepte hacer sacrificios humanos?

Las ideas distorsionadas = (distorted ideas) un líder impone al pueblo ciertas ideas y todos las aceptan

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