Supply chain · 4 January 2017

New Year, new mindset: How small firms can access global business opportunities

Global business opportunities
Innovations in technology and travel have opened global business opportunities up to small companies like never before
In his latest articlefor Business Advice, David Poole, amanaging sales director at FedEx Express, considers how the owners of small firms can capitalise onglobal business opportunities.

The New Year has always signified change and a renewed outlook and, in 2017, the international marketplace offers numerous exciting opportunities for small British companies to take their business global.

With ever-improving interconnectivity, technological innovation and new routes for trade and travel, exporting overseas and reaching global customers is more vital to the continued growth and success of small companies than ever before.

To help connect UK companies to global business opportunities, below are five top tips to help small firmsadopt a global mindset and reach the true potential of international trade.

1. Prioritise your infrastructure

Business infrastructure is essential for small firmsconsidering going global and this is something international entrepreneurs should bear in mind from the outset. To ensure customer satisfaction, communicate with the customers every step of the way and review your dispatch, transport and delivery processes.

This will in turn strengthen your supply chain. Your transportation provider should be able to help you streamline your delivery processes, which will in turn give you peace of mind as well as the opportunity to turn your attention to other areas of the business.

2. See things for yourself

Global business opportunities are now more accessible than ever before thanks to constantly improving interconnectivity, communication methods and travel options.

Nevertheless, no technological advancement will top the importance of face-to-face interaction when it comes to cultivating long-term relationships with clients, suppliers, distributors and other key contacts.

Entrepreneurs tend to make better and more informed business decisions when personally visiting and experiencing potential business destinations. Moreover, face-to-face meetings can impart insights otherwise lost via email or telephone conversations that could influence important future business decisions.

3. Support and develop your team

Sustaining growth and expansion overseas rests on a dependable, cohesive, productive and engaged workforce especially as international trade requires a system of staff, suppliers, partners and local contacts sometimes working across several countries.

Taking even a few moments every so often to appreciate and thank your team will go a long way as well as improving retention rates and earning the continued support of your staff.

4. Adapt, react and prepare in advance

Adaptability is a particularly valuable asset when it comes to overseas trade. Fluctuations within global supply chains and international marketplaces are unavoidable meaning companies able to quickly respond and adapt their processes in response are at a special advantage.

By thoroughly researching potential new markets as well as understanding respective differences and variances entrepreneurs can cover as many bases as possible before launching a business overseas.

Ensure you are fully prepared for any eventuality – your future trade, commerce and long-term business success may benefit from a flexible and forward-thinking approach.

5. Think globally and be ambitious

Taking a business worldwide requires a truly global mindset for motivated entrepreneurs to reach dynamic and potentially lucrative international markets.



David Poole is managing director of sales, UK South at FedEx Express and FedEx UK. FedEx Express is the world's largest express transportation company, providing fast and reliable delivery to every US address, as well as more than 220 countries and territories.?