Do you have a company branch in China that you need to visit in person to improve your international business relationships? Don’t forget to get your visa to China first.
Communication across international boundaries can be quite complicated. That’s because there are language barriers and cultural differences for you to deal with in addition to the regular barriers to communication.
If you make one wrong move, you risk insulting your international business partners or customers. And that could cost your business its reputation and revenues.
For this reason, you need to put measures in place to communicate clearly. Here are 3 ways you can improve communication with your international business partners and customers:
1. Schedule Regular Meetings with All Stakeholders
The longer you stay without communicating, the more likely misunderstandings are to arise. Then resentments will fester and your business relationships will begin to crumble. You, therefore, must prevent such situations from arising in the first place.
You must schedule regular meetings with all stakeholders even if all you will do is to check-in. This can be done for the entire company or each department. Use these meetings to bring all teams up-to-date concerning what you are doing as a company.
Also, provide a judgment-free session for everyone so that they can express themselves without consequences. People tend to feel better when they feel heard and understood. If there is a conflict take steps to have it resolved as soon as possible.
When the lines of communication are open, there is greater clarity and fewer chances of misunderstanding. And your organization will operate more efficiently.
2. Use Trustworthy Interpreters and Translators
Where international business is concerned, there is always an issue of language barriers. And it can cause a lot of problems if it is not handled correctly. There is a big difference between what you may learn in a language class and what is spoken in reality. Context matters. And every language has subtle nuances that you may not notice unless you are a native speaker of the language.
For this reason, you need to invest in trustworthy translators and interpreters to work for your company. Try to hire those that are native speakers or very fluent in the foreign languages you will be dealing with.
They will be responsible for communicating your company messaging to your international business partners and customers. Having such professionals as part of your workforce will ensure there are no misunderstandings. And they will do it while ensuring your business privacy is respected.
3. Visit Your International Business Branches Regularly
It can be quite hectic to run multiple business branches across the globe. But you must take an active role in doing so to successfully grow your business.
There is nothing wrong with having a distributed workforce. Such a workforce allows you to take advantage of talent from everywhere in the world. But you must do more than manage your international businesses from afar. You must take the time to visit them regularly.
Visiting a business in person offers you the chance to experience the situation affecting it realistically. Sometimes you may not understand why your business managers raise certain issues unless you are on the ground.
Also, some business situations may need someone from your company’s headquarters. There may be local conflicts in your international offices that cannot be solved locally. You will have to step in as a mediator to solve the issues yourself.
People respect authority. So, visiting your international business branches in person may be the only way to stamp that authority and show leadership.
Image Source: BigStockPhoto.com (LIcensed)