It can be challenging enough to launch a startup in a local market area, but when launching a global startup, you are playing by a whole different set of rules. In fact, there may be several sets of rules involved, depending on just what key markets you are going to focus on. If you are in the process of launching a new business in multiple markets around the globe, here is some much needed information you really need to know.
Language Barriers May Be Your Biggest Challenge
Consider for a moment the term ‘language barrier.’ As it implies, there can be a real problem translating from one language to the next a concept that may be totally foreign within a different culture or market. Your product or services may be global in scope but if you aren’t able to effectively convey what it is you do or have to offer, you may lose out on markets you could easily capture.
In other words, you must bridge language barriers when going global with your startup. What is acceptable in one language may be totally taboo in another. Always be cognisant of this and if needed, hire professional translation teams to assist you in making the transition from one market to the next.
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The Importance of Respecting Local Customs and Cultural Differences
Startups that are planning to have offices in more than one country should also be aware of variations in local customs and cultural differences that could impact on-site operations. For example, in the UK as well as throughout most of Europe, it is customary to have 20 holidays in addition to national holidays. In the United States, the number of customary holidays is typically 10 and it is required by law that breaks be given throughout the workday per the number of hours worked. Also in the United States it is not mandatory to give ‘vacation’ time but in many parts of Europe it is. These are things you need to know when operating physical locations in more than one part of the globe in order to keep a smooth inter-office workflow.
Hire Local Experts to Negotiate the Best Deals, Leases and Contracts
Dealing with local suppliers, landlords and contractors can also pose a bit of a challenge, even if you have done extensive research previous to deciding on key locations. It is suggested that you hire local HR experts to help with recruitment and perhaps realtors for negotiating the best leases or purchase prices. In addition to being more in tune with local markets and pricing structures, these pros can also bargain in terms better understood within their culture.
Going global with your startup is an ambitious venture and one that can offer amazing results if you keep local customs and cultural differences in mind. What works in one market may not work in another so it is wise to keep local experts and consultants on hand. Whether operating in physical locations or strictly online, there are bound to be differences that will impact your bottom line. The key to running a successful global enterprise is in understanding the key differences that make each culture unique. Only then can you effectively operate from a true global perspective.