As companies go global it is important they remember the
culture and language of the new territory they are expanding
into. Even a small mistake can have long lasting negative
impressions.

During a vendor meeting in San Juan,
Kmart’s vendor
development department was brainstorming ways to
improve the supply chain in their Puerto Rican stores.

A new store had just opened near Ponce which, during the
construction phase, had been delivered the traditional
“Garden Shop” sign for the side of the building. The sign
was in English and the local population was 90% Spanish
speaking.

In pointing out the faux pas, the vendor said, “It said Garden
Shop in English which translated into the Spanish words,
‘your kind not welcome here’.”

Kmart changed the sign shortly after the store opened but
damage had been done.

Related topics


As Aesop established hundreds of years
ago with his timeless fables we remember
words best when we become engaged in a
story. Max has compiled an anecdotal
story collection designed to generate “ah-
ha” moments during coaching sessions,
presentations, and meetings.
Click here to
see more.

©2007 Max Impact, Rochester Hills, Michigan,USA
The Garden Shop