Globalization has left almost no industry untouched. The internet has provided businesses with access to broader markets than ever before, and as a result, many fields are beginning to move into increasingly globalized spaces. The prospect of trying to move into international markets can seem daunting or confusing. Below are a few key facts about globalization, and how it will impact your need to keep your business communication skills current across borders.
Old and New Industries Riding the Wave
Recently, more and more sectors are seeing definite advantages to globalizing. The automobile industry, for so long an American mainstay, has begun to turn its sights internationally in the wake of trying economic times in the United States. The Washington Times reported that major US auto manufacturers started moving their plants out of Detroit to international locations years ago. Despite the recent economic upswing, many factories have since remained outsourced in order to better cater to foreign markets.
“Today, the global nature of the auto industry probably means that factories are more likely to be located in the [southeastern U.S.] or Mexico to serve the markets of the U.S. and Canada,” Zero Hedge analyst Christopher Whalen told the news source.
Perhaps less surprising is the recent hold globalization has taken on the world of e-commerce. While the United States has historically held the crown for most dollars spent online, China is poised to overshoot American e-shoppers by a total of about $30 billion, the New York Times reported. In fact, it is the Chinese cyber-holiday, Singles’ Day, that is responsible for producing the highest one-day online shopping numbers—one retailer reported $5.75 billion in payments processed, the highest single-day take of any retailer in the world.
Preparation and Corporate Training
“Multinational organizations form international teams to pool global talent, meet organizational goals, and implement complex business strategies. A growing number of employees in multinational organizations face the new reality of working in multicultural teams,” said Miriam Erez, faculty member at Technion-Israel Institute of Technology and lead researcher on a report sponsored by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) investigating management of cross-cultural teams.
Integrating awareness of diversity and different cultural behaviors into your company culture can help your employees and managers develop what Erez refers to as both global and cross-cultural perspectives, essential for excelling on a global scale.
Preparation is important not only to set yourself ahead, but also to save yourself from falling behind and making costly mistakes. SHRM reported several pitfalls that await the less-than-savvy, from things like immigration violations to costly international social security payments and liability coverage. Companies looking to globalize painlessly would benefit from the addition of more global or cross-cultural perspectives in order to keep abreast of various cultural and country-specific challenges.
Globalization has offered several sectors such attractive advantages as it opens whole new markets. Between the benefits of improving your company’s reach internationally and the potential risk of making costly or litigious mistakes, the question is not whether your company should consider preparing for globalization, but rather if you can afford not to.