Congratulations! You have now achieved your global expansion dream. However, succeeding in different markets across the globe takes more than just setting foot in those markets. You have the task of managing your international business well in order to succeed and achieve growth. There are challenges that you are going to face along the way. Your ability to overcome them will be instrumental in the growth of your business. That being said, we give you 5 tips to help you navigate international businesses better and see your business thrive.
When communicating with an international team, you have to keep in mind the challenges of culture and language differences. In addition, remember that people working for you across the globe might be in a different time zone from you. For these reasons, focus on being as clear as possible when communicating instructions, expectations, and more. This way, someone in a different time zone doesn’t have to wait for hours for clarification, which expedites task delivery. In addition, avoid jargon and slang when communicating with non-English speakers whether on the phone or by text. It would also benefit your business to learn about the different cultures represented in the team. Understanding their behaviors can help you know how to communicate better.
Besides effective communication, doing it regularly is paramount for teams who work miles apart from each other. Moreover, following up with team members often makes them feel like a valued part of the team, which increases engagement. Ensure that you touch base with each team member via phone, text, or email. When you do, talk about more than just work stuff. Seek to know how they are doing even in their personal lives and offer help where you can. It is also important to have team meetings every now and then. However, remember the time differences and settle on a time that works for everyone. Additionally, settle for time conferencing technology that meets your communication needs. If need be, and whenever you can, travel to your international business locations to meet with your people one-on-one.
Understand the market
Market dynamics keep changing. One day you are dealing with this and the next day with another. If you are to become an international business expert, it is paramount that you understand the different markets well. For this reason, it will benefit you to follow business news in the different locations of your operations as well as the markets that you are eying for future expansion. Moreover, follow business guides when you want to venture into new countries. These guides can give you valuable insights on how to set foot and establish your business in those countries.
Employ technology solutions
Technology is making managing business easier. Leveraging its availability can go a long way in making things easy for you, your team, and your customers. For starters, have a website in place and localize it for every location that you are operating. Ensure to optimize it for mobile to make it easier for your customers. Additionally, use sharing technology such as cloud storage solutions to make information available for the team, especially for those working remotely, and shared spreadsheets for tasks and timelines that members can update. Or you can use knowledge graphs to better understand your business and give another push to it. This way, everyone works on the same page. Ultimately, audit your needs and go for technology choices that will benefit your international business the most.
Leverage local partnerships
When you can’t be physically available in different locations, it is the relationships that you build in those areas that are going to help you run smoothly. Besides, you can take advantage of their knowledge, expertise, and network to grow in those markets. Rather than relocating talents to those countries, employ locals and benefit from their knowledge of the cultures and languages. In addition, local experts such as legal and financial professionals can help you navigate the law and finance dynamics in different countries. Other partnerships such as local delivery companies can help expedite customers’ deliveries, which is important for customer satisfaction.
Running an international business can be daunting owing to the different challenges that come with it. However, it can be done easily with the right strategies in place. Ensure that you focus on communicating effectively and regularly. Find ways to stay on top of the markets by acquiring the right information and insights. Additionally, work on building local relationships to gain from their expertise and knowledge of the market. Lastly, employ technology that suits your business needs.