Fortune Favors the Prepared
I’m back with a little more for the blog. Earlier this month, on Thursday June 4, I lucked up and got invited to a truly marvelous half day symposium that was held at Northeastern University’s Center for Emerging Markets. The symposium was organized by Ravi Ramamurti, Distinguished Professor of International Business and the center’s director.
Capitalizing on Emerging Market Opportunities featured several high ranking speakers from government and industry, who offered some revealing perspectives on the reality of foreigners doing business in China and India. The directors of the US-China and US-India Business Councils both spoke, as did VPs from Liberty Mutual International, Staples, EMC, Tata, Pfizer and Thermo Fisher Scientific. I took lots of notes.
Ready For My Close-up
So am I making a plan to do business overseas in the near future? That’s an exciting prospect (I love to travel and experience other lands and cultures. I also love to shop and eat!), but it does not appear to be in the cards at this time.
However, prospective clients may be taking a look at how their organizations might fare in certain international markets. Some may have stars in their eyes and see juicy new revenue streams and others may feel pressured, reluctantly viewing markets outside the US as the only way to keep the business profitable.
Regardless of the motive, those of us who traffic in business strategy or work with decision makers in the tactical functions, which could include coaching management teams, facilitating CEO forums, market research and strategic marketing, operations, sales and of course brainstorming sessions and strategic planning, will be better able to serve our clients and our businesses if we are able to anticipate the opportunities and challenges that those clients are likely to encounter as they evaluate entering overseas markets. We need to know what they don’t know!
Knowledge is Power
It all comes down to the tried and true axiom of knowing your customer. We need to know what excites them and what worries keep them awake at night. We need to be able to show them ways they can make money, ways they can save money and also the ways they might lose money. One of the ways we can do all of that is to stay abreast of what is going on in local, regional, national and international business environments. So keep reading the WSJ, the NYT plus your local newspaper. Be sure to attend a conference or two before this year ends and get some useful info on business issues that may be on the minds of clients and prospects. It makes for some good networking. You just might meet your next client!