March to Success on Foreign Shores – Building Good Relations with International Businesses
Trading with foreign companies is an extremely exciting prospect for any business. It can mean you are able to buy items more cheaply, access specialist suppliers and sell your products or services to an ever-expanding market. Building and optimising good relationships abroad, however, can be a little more challenging and needs careful consideration.
As well as potential language barriers, there’s a wide range of other technical issues to be addressed when working with foreign companies and suppliers. For example, there are legal implications that need to be looked into, such as import and export restrictions and liability matters. It is paramount that clear contracts are drawn up between both parties and that there are no murky clauses that could lead to confusion. Other areas for consideration include payment and shipping procedures. Working through these issues in advance means that new business relationships will get off on the right foot.
While telephone calls, emails and video conference calls are all very good ways in which to communicate with international clients and partners, nothing beats a good old-fashioned face-to-face meeting. These can be great for building confidence and trust and, therefore, should be factored in as much as is practicable for both parties. Building close working relationships over time can lead to optimised financial productivity for all.
Generally speaking, when you first start to trade with foreign businesses, it will be on a contract to contact basis and each contact will be, for the most part quite short. If things are working well then it may be a good idea to revise this arrangement, setting up longer contract periods and frequencies will give you a good opportunity to negotiate more favourable terms.
Draft in Some Help
If the thought of all this leaves you feeling slightly queasy, then one option you may want to consider is drafting in some help. Companies like Ebury, provide tailored packages to companies working on the international stage. Their services include funding, currency services and they have a vast network that you can take advantage of as well as a wealth of expertise in global trading.
Evaluate and Develop
Regular progress reviews of established business relationships are a good way to identify areas for improvement. For example, it may be that a new piece of technology could help streamline your operation and thus build profits. Work together with clients, suppliers and the like, two heads are better than one and the process will be much more thorough if conducted this way.
Business without boundaries, particularly those of a geographical nature is to be embraced and effective global trading is a giant leap in the right direction.