Expanding your business to an international scale can be much easier when you form a global partnership. You can use this type of partnership to develop innovative products or acquire new channels for your products. Forming a global partnership can be more than intimidating, whether you’re experienced in international business or just getting started. I hope that my experience with alliances of this type may guide your preparation, and make venturing into global partnerships an easier process:
When building a global partnership, it’s essential to be as selective as possible. While that’s true for your domestic business, remember that to a global audience/market, your new partner is the face of your company. Make sure your new representative aligns with your business’s practices, mission, and morals. It’s also important this partner has financial stability; there must be an overall gain from the partnership, else, why do it? Don’t jump on the first partner to show interest. Take the time to find the right partner and don’t settle for less.
Is Your Company Ready?
Although you may have found the right international partner for your business, your company might not be ready to grow on a global scale. For the partnership to be successful, both parties need to be ready to take on more business and exposure. A global partnership comes with a lot of responsibility and is a major commitment. For instance, if your business is already having trouble maintaining partnerships within your own borders, a global partnership is not a good idea. Spend time readying your systems, services, products, and personnel before committing to a global partnership.
Have a Contingency Plan
Even after careful research of your partner and laying out all the ways it can go right, a global partnership is still a risk. As such, it’s important to have a contingency plan ready. Now is the time to lay out all the ways things can go wrong! Suppose the partnership ends up not working out and is hurting your business instead of improving it. In that case, the alliance should come to an end. Before the agreement is even signed, decide how each party can end the alliance.
Define The Roles and Responsibilities
To eliminate any disagreements or bumps in the road in the future, be sure to determine each other’s roles and responsibilities in the partnership early on. For instance, assign each partner’s job title and duties before signing any agreement. Doing so gives each partner control of his or her domain while avoiding miscommunication or contention; additionally, you can determine whether this is a general partnership, limited partnership, or limited liability partnership. This choice is a critical aspect of the partnership—with massive repercussions to consider—before you head into this new venture.