Going International: How To Take Your Business Global

Growth is a natural process, and when you run a business, you reach a point where you’re ready to break into new markets. For local businesses, this may mean expanding statewide or even to a national level. However, if you already operate on a national level, the next step is to go global.

Scaling your business to an international level isn’t for everyone, but for those who are prepared and committed, it can be a powerful way to transform your brand into a global presence.

First things first

Before taking any steps, you need to first think hard about this major decision. Growing too quickly can negatively impact the quality of your product or service, so don’t rush into anything without proper consideration. Consider whether you can serve overseas clients just as well as you help your home base. Also, start planning on how you will take care of your current clients throughout the growing pains. Expanding globally isn’t worth losing the strong client base you already have at home.

Learn to adapt

Other countries and cultures will have different expectations and communication styles, so you need to be prepared to be adaptable. Keep in mind that the products in your overseas markets might be completely different than what you’re accustomed to at home — that doesn’t mean it’s wrong, it just means your international clients have different needs. Rest assured, you will find out these little idiosyncrasies as you go along, so continue going forward and adapting.

Keep your team close

Going global is an exciting endeavor, so be sure to bring your team along for the ride. Once we started doing international events, my team was strengthened to the core. Our employees realize that our work and our skill set is limitless; we can do it anywhere. It’s an incredible journey and one that is excellent for boosting morale and employee engagement.

Find new connections

When you’re working outside of your comfort zone, it can seem overwhelming to source things like décor pieces, rentals, or florals. Fortunately, all regions have a few choice vendors available, and it only takes one strong connection. Find a reputable wholesaler and ask for referrals to other trusted vendors. Recommendations are just as powerful overseas as they are here at home, if not more so. After a few events, you’ll fall into rhythm with your people, and you won’t even remember the pressure of finding new partners.

Taking your business global isn’t for the weak; it requires hard work, resourcefulness, and perseverance. Don’t be afraid of the unknown; everything is unknown until you figure it out. Think about the fact that being an entrepreneur was once considered ‘unknown,’ yet here you are today. Branching out to new markets is extremely rewarding, and you’ll find that you, your team, and your whole company will flourish as a result of such an endeavor. 

Oleta Collins is the owner of Flourishing Art Design Studio, a premier florist and design studio in Bakersfield, California, that specializes in luxury weddings and events. She is also a Certified Floral Designer and an accredited member of the American Institute of Floral Designers.

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