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The toolkit contains original articles, checklists and unique tools to put logic into the process of selecting overseas markets and partners. Order now

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The Market Entry Toolkit

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Entrepreneurs, Startups, Global Business, International Marketing Before you start that business, or business abroad, learn the Lessons from the Road from someone who has been there. A few moments of your time can save you headache, heartache, and money!

Our Road Scholars have learned lessons the hard way, in dozens of businesses and dozens of countries.

Why Do Firms Fail In Asia? – Global Business Advice

Filed under: Global Business — November 7, 2014 @ 4:34 pm

Why do companies fail? The two main reasons are to do with lack of understanding of the Asian markets and inadequate planning for it. Asia is a big continent of 3.5 billion people in 26 countries. There are over 150 languages with many unspoken rules about business, culture and trust.

Asia creates Great Opportunities and poses Huge Risks.

iga’s sole purpose is to help US companies be successful in Asia. With iga’s experience, understanding and connections, we help companies avoid the landmines of unknown territories, so that you can plan appropriately for your products or services.

It costs very little to sign a contract, but it can be very expensive to support inactive distributors. Not to mention the expense and difficulties in trying to get out of unprofitable contracts. iga has set up over 200 performing distributors in Asia. Let us help you find the right ones.

Poor implementation defeats a great plan. Once distributors are signed up, it requires skills and constant management to ensure your products and services are supported adequately, effectively and profitably.

Many companies enter Asia for “bonus” revenue and do not have a focus and do not know what is considered successful. In addition, since the alliance partners are far away, they often get minimal support from the US company.

This is even less about language and more about culture and “being on top of things”. Out of sight often is out of mind. Many distributors are out there doing whatever they do by themselves, mostly selling other companies’ products. You cannot let that happen.

What can be done in one country may be totally impossible in another. Terms and conditions, including payment and delivery, must be appropriate for the country you are doing business in. Also, most countries are not as litigious as the US. Often times it is relationship that get you paid, not your contract terms.

Because the US is governed by a Rule of Law, we assume other countries are the same. The fact is, many Asian countries still are governed by Rule of People to some degree. Often times it is impossible to “sue” a company that did not fulfil its contractual terms. So ACT wisely.

This is a gray area to begin with, and it gets grayer and grayer as we stray far from home. Act wisely based on knowledge and connections can help tremendously.

Simple as it may sound, many companies were successful “making” money in Asia but could not get their money out of the country they are in. So they may need to “barter and trade” and are forced to start an import/export division. Know before you get in.

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Global Business Slide Show – Common Errors in Global Business

Filed under: Global Business — October 6, 2014 @ 11:21 am

International Business Podcast – China Outsourcing; Easy to do?

Filed under: Uncategorized — September 15, 2014 @ 9:44 pm

Click here for the latest International Business Podcast brought to you by International Toolkit

What Can A Chinese Restaurant Teach Me About Global Business?

Filed under: Global Business — August 15, 2014 @ 4:38 pm

What a Chinese Restaurant Taught Me About International Business

A great gateway to understanding a foreign culture and overseas business styles can be explored in your neighborhood Chinese restaurant. The interactions and lessons in your local noodle parlor can translate as a “how to” guide for Chinese business.

Can you spot the boss? Is there a designated chain of command? My experience in Chinese restaurants (even ones with more than 50 staff) shows that there is one designated boss, and he or she makes every decision. The Chinese themselves refer to a “velvet fist” that the boss wields…his say is final, but the words are softened with paternalism and good feelings. This management style translates to large firms as well. Even CEO’s in large Chinese firms have the tendency to be involved in more details than their Western counterparts.

Pronunciation and language
A CEO of a large firm asked me how he could take his firm into China. I asked him: “how will you handle the fact that not one Chinese person can say the name of your brand?” Since he didn’t believe me, my advice was to walk into a Chinese restaurant, put his product in front of the waiter and ask him to pronounce it! He was shocked to find out that no one in the room could say his the name of his product! What an inexpensive way to do some basic market research.

There is this concept in Asia that anyone who helps with anything, can help with absolutely everything. I can’t count the times a Chinese restauranteur has a “brother in China who can source products” or a “cousin who can help me with Chinese business,” or “knows how to sell products in Asia.” A man selling $8 plates of fried rice is unlikely to be a marketing specialist in Asia.

Truth and lies
When a westerner walks into a restaurant and told his order would be ready in 5 minutes and it takes 20 minutes, we feel we’ve been mislead. Chinese aren’t necessarily lying here. They are saying “it won’t take long.” Think of how many times you’ve been told in the USA “it’s not in the budget” instead of “we don’t want your product.”

Level of intimacy
There is no word in Chinese for intimacy and there is no word for privacy. Chinese restaurants are often “under designed.” In many cultures (and larger cities in the USA) waiters will ask you to share large tables with other groups. On the level of intimacy, it’s not uncommon to see bright lights and hear the waitstaff and cooking staff speak loudly. What this tells the diner about what is private and what is public translates to business.

Belief in future
This is a common cultural discussion point. Have you every noticed why most Chinese restaurants have red decor? Red is the color of luck in China. It shows a belief in luck. Scholars of China find the culture to be very superstitious.

Guan Xi
This concept, loosely translated to “back door” summarizes how Chinese business gets done. If you have Guan Xi (GWAN SHEE) or relationships, everything is possible. If you don’t, nothing is possible.
Few diners feel any kinship with a bathroom in a restaurant. It’s why we often see nice restaurants with paper towels or other garbage on the floor. The same lack of Gaun Xi can be seen in the parking lot of many Chinese restaurants. Since the drivers don’t know each other, the parking lot can be seen as a “free for all” by us.

It seems that every article on Chinese business talks about how Chinese can lose face (pride) easily. Negotiators are often warned about the dangers of making Chinese lose face. Intermediaries are often brought in to float ideas back and forth so that disagreements and suggestions between 2 parties become indirect. As a trusted go-between in many negotiations, I’ve been privy to statements and feelings that would never be communicated directly. An example in a restaurant this idea of “face” is evident when a customer wishes to return a dish. This can bring a sense of shame and make the transaction difficult and uncomfortable. The waiter must communicate to the Chef that the food wasn’t satisfactory, making the chef lose face as well. In an example in Hong Kong, the use of face comes right to your table. When you pay for your meal and the waiter brings you change, he/she often has coins on a small metal tray laid out. The customer then chooses the coins to leave and the coins to take off the tray, all in the presence of the waiter who holds the tray in front of him.

So the next time your planning that big international trip, go out for an ethnic meal and keep your eyes open.


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10 Questions For Foreign Firms Wishing to Enter the USA 3D Printing Marketplace

Filed under: 3d printing,Global Business — July 14, 2014 @ 8:29 am

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3D Printing Video Skit With Einstein and Lincoln Doing 3D Printing

Filed under: 3d printing — June 25, 2014 @ 5:46 pm 3D Printing Video. Join the 3D Printing Linked In Group

Funny 3D Printing Video – 3D Printing Under the Sea

Filed under: 3d printing — May 21, 2014 @ 9:39 pm

Enjoy this funny 3d Printing Video. For more, go to youtube.

Funny 3d printing video!

Filed under: 3d printing — May 12, 2014 @ 9:34 pm,

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