International business relationships; prevention, maintenance and repair through Corporate Cultural Diplomacy

By Grant Hall.  Founder of League Cultural Diplomacy

SAMSUNG CSC
Young motorcycle repair mechanic.
Phan Thiet, Vietnam.

In business your relationships are valuable assets and  this is especially true in international business.

As any car hire fleet manager will tell you, the more you invest in preventative and ongoing maintenance the less you will spend making expensive repairs after a vehicle breakdown.

The same is true of your business relationships.

These relationships can also be maintained through:

  • Preventative maintenance
  • Ongoing maintenance
  • Repairs

Mechanics need tools to perform maintenance and maintaining your business relationships can’t be left to chance. You need tools.

Corporate cultural diplomacy can be used to maintain, repair or even prevent your relationships from degrading.  It is an influential and versatile tool.

Businesses can implement corporate cultural diplomacy activities before they arrive in a new market location. When they do so they are investing in a preventative measure that will reduce the costs of cultural maintenance and repair at a later date.  Businesses that do this are creating beneficial and trusting relationships that might save them down the track.  This approach is highly recommended

Businesses can implement corporate cultural diplomacy activities as ongoing maintenance.  Ongoing cultural maintenance is needed to keep your essential business relationships in foreign markets in good working order.  In the same way that good ongoing maintenance of a car reduces the risk of breakdowns and expensive repair bills, good ongoing cultural maintenance can help prevent expensive breakdowns of key strategic relationships when working in foreign markets.

Businesses can implement corporate cultural diplomacy activities to make repairs when their international business venture is not going according to plan.  Cultural engagement activities can be used to repair broken relationships and help rebuild trust, be it with the public, key-decision makers, strategic partners, governments or any range of stakeholders.  For example, cultural engagement activities can repair the damage of a PR disaster.

I can’t stress this point enough; if you invest in culture-based preventative and maintenance measures, you will be less likely to have business breakdowns that require expensive repair jobs.

I have lived and worked in Asia on-and-off since 2009 and I see international business ventures come and go.  Older hands can tell from the start which business ventures will succeed and which ones will last only a year or two before shutting up shop after an expensive failure that the local market barely noticed.  Businesses with strong corporate relationships established before they set up a regional base are the ones that are likely to be successful – those that arrive unannounced and without any relationships are usually doomed to fail.  Just make sure your venture falls into the former category and not the latter.

Remember – your business relationships are valuable, profit making assets!  Maintain them every bit as well as you maintain your other assets.I have lived and worked in Asia on-and-off since 2009 and I see international business ventures come and go.  Older hands can tell from the start which business ventures will succeed and which ones will last only a year or two before shutting up shop after an expensive failure that the local market barely noticed.  Businesses with strong corporate relationships established before they set up a regional base are the ones that are likely to be successful – those that arrive unannounced and without any relationships are usually doomed to fail.  Just make sure your venture falls into the former category and not the latter.

If you enjoyed this post, I’d be thrilled if you’d help it spread by emailing it to a friend or sharing it. Thank you!

                                                       —Grant Hall, where words fail

Recommended posts about Corporate Cultural Diplomacy:

What is Corporate Cultural Diplomacy?

4 Steps to Corporate Cultural Diplomacy

Corporate Cultural Diplomacy and the Magic 5 Ingrediants

2 dozen reasons to use Corporate Cultural Diplomacy

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