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Sail the 7Cs to Grow your International Business
Dermott Dowling, Founding Director @Creatovate and Patrick Tully, Partner @Fusion Learning share some insight into their 7Cs ‘critical thinking’ framework to break down the challenge of where, when and how to create, grow and sustain an International Business.
For many businesses and business owners change can feel both exciting and challenging, and for some it feels downright daunting. However, what is universally true is that business growth without change is very difficult to achieve and for many businesses the most effective form of growth and change is expansion into new markets or geographies.
The journey to extend into other markets can, in its infancy, seem overwhelming particularly for small and medium sized ventures that are highly dependent on their domestic success. However, like any journey, the provision of a route-map and a travel guide can both shed light on the destination and map out the pathway to getting there. This is the purpose of our 7Cs framework, to help structure, plan and build rock solid foundations for a strategy for expansion into Asia and beyond. Think of it like planning a journey across the Seven Seas from the safety and security of the home port before you set sail into the unknown beyond your home borders.
The 7Cs framework includes a wide range of processes and tools that enable us to strive for the extra-ordinary. Our ability to deliver, however, is founded on the first, critical step – setting ourselves an extra-ordinary challenge.
Once you have set your business challenge and aligned your company and leaders internally around the opportunity to internationalise your business your attention immediately turns to where?
Having decided on the country or countries we are aiming to enter we need to understand the category or categories from which we want to source our business.
4. Competition or Collaboration
Competition in the new market(s) your business enters is highly likely to be different to your home market. Working out where to compete and how to collaborate is vital.
The ultimate custodian of success or failure in any geography is the consumer of our product or service – if they don’t connect with and continue to consumer our offer then we are doomed to failure.
Overlooked in so many case studies in the race to understand the preceding 5Cs and get your product or service out the door, many businesses miss the opportunity to get an early ‘Voice of the Customer’ in their International Business strategy creation and implementation.
Having spent time looking at the external context in the preceding 6Cs the time has now come to start looking inwardly to identify the strengths and opportunities you can leverage to guarantee your success.