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Overseas Business Investment: Tips To Collaborate With Local Team

Asloob Alam

“It is the long history of humankind that those who learned to collaborate and improvise most effectively have prevailed.” – Charles Darwin; English Naturalist.


Emerging economies and the power of the internet are unlocking numerous investment opportunities for entrepreneurs. They can learn about international market conditions and draft a business expansion plan accordingly.


However, commencing a business and growing it overseas are two discrete things. Let’s learn about the same in detail.

How Does International Business Growth Pose A Challenge For Native Entrepreneurs?

When you launch a venture in your home country, you are somewhat informed about the target audience, competitors, and economic circumstances. This assists with building a loyal customer base, generating leads, and boosting ROI.


On the flip side, when growing your firm by investing in overseas startups, you’ll need to start from scratch. This process generally begins by qualifying for an investment visa in the country of your choice.


Let’s suppose you plan to expand your company horizons to Italy. In that case, you’ll have to be well-versed with the investment possibilities available in the country. This could be done in two ways:


  • Online market research
  • Physical visit to the Italian market


After shortlisting the opportunities, you’d have to apply for an investment visa. For this purpose, you can contact and learn about the necessary documents required. The immigration lawyers can further assist you with the application process. As it’s a matter of international financial affairs, they can further guide you about the government guidelines and benefits you can avail.


Once you are qualified, you can dwell in Italy for the long term and collaborate with local teams to streamline brand growth.


This brings us to the topic of discussion:


How To Collaborate With The Local Teams?

Whether you plan to work from your home country or Italy, to ensure smooth working, you’d have to take the following key points into consideration. It will ensure you understand the common roadblocks of team cooperation and overcome them with ease.

Consideration No.1: Cultural Norms

Connecting with your global team is undoubtedly a challenge; however, not a burden. Instead, it presents you with opportunities to work with diverse people and learn about their cultures. In short, it will provide you with a fresh perspective on business management.


For instance, in Italy, workers have the freedom to express their opinion, admire interpersonal relations and follow a hierarchy. Therefore, to work with them, you’ll need to focus on breaking the ice in the first few meetings.


On the other hand, the work culture of the US is less hierarchical and formal. They prefer to dress in relaxed clothing and address their superiors by their first name.


Learning about the unique cultural norms will assist you in building better communication and understanding the team’s requirements. It will eliminate the chances of conflicts- clearing paths for investment success.


Pro Tip: Though plenty of resources available online could guide you about cultural diversity, you must focus on encouraging the staff to share their experiences. It will foster camaraderie and cut the first turf.

Consideration No. 2: Language Barriers

There are more than 7,100 languages in the world. No matter in which country you are investing, language barriers are likely to cause a commotion during the communication process. That’s why entrepreneurs often work with translators during international business meetings.


Despite that, learning some language basics would help you strike regular conversations and establish an informal connection with the local team. Let’s take an example for better understanding.


In Italy, language differences make it tough for native Americans to communicate with local brands. It is because the locals prefer to talk in their mother tongue only. Not knowing the basic slang, greetings, or terms might affect the quality of communication. It may twist the gist of the message, leading to unnecessary confusion.


To lower the barrier, you must use appropriate terms and may incorporate humor in the conversation. It will indicate that you are making efforts to understand and unite with the team. On the other side, your Italian staff will feel respected, valued, and heard. Try using internal team collaboration applications like Troop Messenger, which is multi-lingual. It supports many international languages, helping you chat in the native language of your investment partner. Consequently, the conversation will become a little friendlier, interpersonal relations will improve, and the organization will get fruitful results.


Pro Tip: Create a user guide that highlights the dos and don’ts of international business communication. It’ll assist you during meetings and even casual conversations. As a result, the language barriers could be eliminated to a great extent.

Consideration No. 3: Time Zone

Investing in a venture overseas often calls for meetings at abrupt times. In a few cases, it even leads to mismanagement or loss of the deal. Understanding the time zone difference and scheduling the team meetings accordingly is integral for preventing these circumstances.


It is also noteworthy that different countries have different working hours laws. So, your appointments must adhere to the country or state regulations.


Likewise, it would be best if you considered the national and international holidays when planning a visit. Otherwise, it may cause a hassle for the local teams and affect your relationships.


Thereby, it is recommended to be very specific about the date and time (along with time zone codes such as Eastern Standard Time, Pacific Standard Time, or Central Standard Time) when scheduling a meeting or deadline. Yet, you must be flexible to make necessary changes to match every party’s requirements.


Pro Tip: Create a master calendar, including holidays and working hours and share it with your global team. It will lower the possibility of time zone conflicts. You may even invite the team members to attend the conference virtually. It will reduce the chances of skipping the schedule.

Consideration No. 4: Teamwork

Last but most importantly, to make the collaboration with your global teamwork, focus on teamwork. Remember the popular saying, “Teamwork Makes The Dream Work.”


As you’ll be working with people of diverse backgrounds, learn to reap benefits from their strengths. Regardless of what type of investment you make, teamwork will provide you with a unique outlook for the work and give you a competitive advantage. It’ll ensure you create a distinct customer base, improve brand image in the international market and enjoy high RoI.


However, it does not mean you’ll not encounter the “US vs. Them” conflicts. There might be issues where your staff might disagree to a greater degree, but you need to come up with a solution that’s most feasible for your business.


To build team spirit, conducting regular team-building activities and meetings would be a wise decision. It will allow everyone to understand the working culture and respect them.


Pro Tip: Celebrating different cultures is a great way to ignite the feeling of togetherness in your team. You may arrange small activities to get to know each other and show your respect for the diversity.


"Understanding And Respecting Culture Diversity Is The Key To Collaboration"


Upscaling your business to an international level is a significant milestone. After all, it brings your company one step closer to accomplishing its goals.


However, this journey is not hassle-free. With the increase in company operations, you’ll have to understand the taste and preferences of the end-user by connecting with the locals. Focus on uniting your team to build brand awareness and recoup the investment.

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