Building Great Global Relationships: Working With Overseas Clients

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Whether you’re a business or a freelancer, now is an amazing time to work with international clients. Technology has made it easier than ever to communicate, and the shift to remote working recently has made businesses and individuals more comfortable with working collaboratively online. 

Working with overseas clients can open up a lot of new and exciting opportunities as you expand your business. But it also comes with some challenges you’ll need to work through to make it a success.

Ready to start working with some amazing new ventures? Here’s how to build great relationships when working with overseas clients.

Educate yourself about different cultures 

Different countries have different work cultures, and if you’re going to work successfully with them, you need to learn about them. Before approaching a new client, take some time to get to know their work practices, working times and days and more. It helps to take a look at guides to doing business in different countries to help you get off on the right foot. It can be very easy for miscommunication to happen, but the more research you do, the better your chance or working well with others.

Make the most of translation services

Translation services can be extremely valuable if you’re dealing with work in another language. Using legal translation services can help you draft contracts while making it easier for you to produce work to a high standard. It’s not always easy to work in multiple languages, but having the right tools and some help when you need it can make a big difference.

And remember, while Google and Bing Translate are great, it’s always worth having any translations checked over by someone who is fluent in the language!

Adapt your English

Even when communicating in English, it’s easy for things to get lost in translation. When communicating with clients overseas, using plain English is the best approach. In writing, you may need to adapt your spelling (realize not realise and color instead of colour, etc), but you’ll also want to consider the types of slang and different terms you use too.

Making your English plainer not only makes it easier for someone to understand, but it can also aid translations in providing more accurate translations.

Keep things professional

Different cultures have different expectations when it comes to working relationships. While you might have a more casual approach with your local clients, it pays to have more professionalism when conducting business overseas. From keeping your tone even and avoiding being overly confident or dominating the conversation, it’s better to take a neutral approach when it comes to working with others, at least until you get to know them better.

Adjust to working in different time zones

Working with overseas clients will mean working in different time zones. It’s important to be upfront about your working hours when you first engage with clients, while also taking the time to understand theirs. There are different considerations for working with clients in different time zones, including establishing different times for communications, and making sure you keep in touch regularly. You could even outsource some of your work to someone who is local, or if you’ve ever wanted to travel – consider a short stay in the location of your work for a while!

You’ll need to get better at managing your own time and finding ways to run your business more effectively. Once you establish a routine with your new clients, it will become much easier to stick to your schedule and boost your productivity.

Send thoughtful gestures

Working with clients in different countries provides some incredible opportunity to experience and explore other cultures. But it also gives you the chance to share some of yours. Sending thank you gifts can help build up some great relationships with your clients, and makes a wonderful gesture too. Whether at the end of the partnership or to celebrate a holiday or a new year, a thank you gift puts you in your client’s thoughts and shows them that you appreciate your relationship.

By expanding your business to work globally, you can encounter all kinds of exciting new challenges and projects. To make a success of working with overseas clients, you’ll need to do the legwork to understand their needs and ways of working to help you deliver the best results. There are a lot of incredible opportunities out there, so explore what’s out in the world and expand your working horizons.

Critical Mistakes International Entrepreneurs Must Avoid

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Becoming a domestic entrepreneur is a challenge, but at least you know enough about the culture to understand what is going to work, and what isn’t. Taking your business international, though, is an entirely different ball game. You don’t know what makes people tick, and so you can’t always work out what they want. 

Unfortunately, entrepreneurs often wind up making critical mistakes when they try to take their companies overseas. And it can often wind up costing them a lot of money. 

In this post, we take a look at these mistakes and what you can do to avoid them. 

Failing To Assimilate The Culture

Assimilating culture is challenging. You have to step outside of your existing assumptions and then carefully observe how people in different places live their lives. It requires tremendous mental discipline and acuity of mind. Frankly, it’s not something that anyone finds easy. 

Just look at the trouble that international chains have had exporting their business models to other parts of the world. Amazon is still a fringe player in Asian markets. Fast-food chain Subway continues to struggle to replicate its North American business model in India. And even banks, like Citi, struggle to replicate their business models across the globe. It’s a nightmare. 

Before exporting overseas:

  1. Think about your target market and get to know them. If you’re struggling with this, get local people to do it for you.
  2. Take their word for it. If something doesn’t seem to make a lot of sense to you, don’t just ignore it.
  3. Run with it.

Usually, the people on the ground know more than you do. 

Failing To Get Proper Translations

We’ve all ordered products from China that came with poorly-written manuals. It’s kind of funny, but also frustrating at the same time.

Unfortunately, a lot of entrepreneurs are perpetuating this problem when they sell overseas. They fail to use proper documents translation, and so they wind up with something that sounds totally unprofessional. 

If you have any copy or media that you want to create in a different language, always get it professionally translated. Don’t rely on machines. 

Failing To Visit The Business Itself

When it comes to managing an international business, many entrepreneurs take a decidedly hands-off approach. Not a good idea. 

People on the ground will always tell you that things are going great. But unless you actually inspect what they’re doing yourself, you can wind up in all kinds of trouble. Remember, international managers always have an incentive to portray a rosier picture than what is happening on the ground—bear than in mind in your interactions. And make regular visits to your locations to check that everything is ship-shape. 

Failing To Use International Accountants

Accountants are usually very good at managing domestic affairs. However, they will often struggle when it comes to international matters. If you have complicated tax relationships, you need to ensure that you get skilled people on your team to manage them. Otherwise, you could wind up paying more than you need.

Top 5 Countries For Businesses To Flourish In 2019

Economic development is a crucial criterion in the determination of the country’s development. Since 2001, when the economic reforms in many countries were suggested by the World Bank, governments have different countries have been taking initiatives to make it easier for economic operations within their respective borders.

The period between June 2017 and May 2018, witnessed a record 314 reforms introduced by 128 governments to benefit small and medium business and entrepreneurs.

The world bank makes use of 11 indexed measures to rank the best countries for businesses to flourish. These include ease of starting a business, registering property, scoring credit, tax filing, contractual enforcement, labor market regulations, minority investors’ protection, electrical supplies, construction permits, resolving insolvency, and trade across borders. Based on this matrix, the top 5 countries for setting up business and smooth operations are listed below.

1. New Zealand

The ease of starting a business in New Zealand is unmatched. It takes only a few hours time for an entrepreneur to get together all the necessary paperwork for establishing their business. Ever since the recession in 2009, New Zealand has achieved 2-3% annual growth in its economy. According to the World Bank, minority investors’ protection reforms and free trade agreements along with efficient tax codes are a few contributors to New Zealand’s top-ranked economic model.

2. Singapore

This Asian country has emerged as a global leader for investments and business start-ups. With various government grants available and regulatory policies in place such as Startup Enterprise Development Scheme, Early Stage Venture Funds, Productivity and Innovation Credit, and many other schemes alike, Singapore is set to manifest the biggest innovation and technology industry, globally. The government has specifically emphasized on boosting the tourism sector with the help of Business Improvement Fund, which is available to all registered businesses operating in the tourism sector or relating to it.

3. Norway

One of the richest countries in the world and the fastest growing in Europe, Norway offers the best ecosystem for entrepreneurs. With its digitally advanced technology and stable political reforms, it has been offering three types of corporate entities to its entrepreneurial audience. These include Norwegian-registered Foreign Enterprises, Sole proprietorships, and Private Limited Liability Companies.

4. United Kingdoms

The cost of starting up a business in the UK is as low as £81 (~100 USD), which is very low as compared to any other country in the world. Low business costs, high labor supplies, and quality of life make it most favorable to the industrial entrepreneurs. According to a study, people in the UK strongly adhere to the thought that hard work can get them ahead in life. The World Bank supports this statement for it to rank amongst the most favorable countries for businesses.

5. Macedonia FYR

This southeastern country, formerly the Yugoslav Republic, has been reforming it’s economic grounds since it’s independence in 1991. World Bank indicates at the pace of economic growth in the country owing to the industry-specific regulations and favorable foreign investment schemes. The country has recently made a mark in its foreign investment policies to encourage non-resident entrepreneurs and businessmen.

For setting up a business, the political atmosphere, the taxation norms, the paperwork, and an insider can prove helpful when establishing a business out of native boundaries.