Florida business owners interested in a share of the global market will want to do their homework before taking a leap into international trade. The intricacies of international business law can trip up the best of us, but at The Law Offices of Levi Williams, P.A., we have successfully assisted entrepreneurs in understanding and addressing the nuances of a global marketplace.
For insight into the preparations owners should make before taking the leap, Forbes lays out key steps. Among the first is developing a strategic plan. As a profitable business owner, you know success does not happen without a plan for it, but Forbes details specifics for an expanding global company:
- Decide what the international location will be, a separate entity or a branch of your central office
- Set immediate goals and long-term strategies
- Put the objectives in ink by committing to specific actions your team will perform by specific dates
- Take into account the cultural environment of the new office and plan accordingly
- Use local strategy without neglecting corporate priorities
In addition to significant planning of overall aims, Forbes advises taking "necessary steps to market-ready your offerings to achieve high-impact product differentiation." In other words, contextualize the product for the local market. Will it sell as is or will local consumers be more attracted to it in a different packaging, for example? Does it satisfy local standards of quality? Do you have local venues to distribute it?
Notice Forbes stresses the importance of "local" in the international scene. While the new office's policies and procedures should remain in line with those of your company's international headquarters, Forbes emphasizes avoiding a "one size fits all" approach. Rather, set up everything from the structure of the local office to the compensation packages in a way that is appropriate and beneficial in the local context.
Lastly, whatever you do, do not forget to vet the translated name. More than one organization has gotten in a pinch when top executives learned how consumers perceived the translation of the company's name. Ask around before the sign goes up and you print the brochures.