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Global business is changing. Social trends sweep across the world as populations change constantly and take their customs with them. (Due to immigration from Afghanistan cricket is now the fastest growing sport in Germany, going from four to 50 clubs, just in Bavaria).
Export is about so much more than freight forwarding and customs clearance. It’s starts with developing an outward-looking culture and bringing in a diverse workforce which embraces a global culture, is social media savvy and multi-lingual. Perhaps like the young people below.

It’s proven that companies with a diverse workforce are more successful exporters.
So let’s look out for some change-makers and create some Export Growers

Many companies are not adapting their export culture and practices to fit in with this new world order. They still rely on distributors and agents who have not changed their business practices either and as the retail landscape is changing across the world, with the high streets being decimated, vloggers having a massive influence and consumers demanding instant, personalised service.
Yes, it’s difficult to sit somewhere in, say, Lancashire, and understand what is happening with your products and competitors in Brazil if you don’t speak Portuguese and don’t follow Brazilian social media. (Brazil is Facebook’s third largest market with 122 million users!).
But the sad news is that when we look at various training courses and support programmes they are still focused on the mechanics of export, such as freight forwarding and almost completely ignores these important aspects of culture, consumer engagement and constant change.

This is why Optimum Export are proposing to establish an Export Grower Apprenticeship where young people from diverse communities have the opportunity to learn about exporting skills while bringing a global outlook to their employers – a win-win situation!

Time for a new apprenticeship

Optimum Export proposes a new Export Grower Apprenticeships programme.
Such an apprenticeship would help develop a new workforce which could help Britain Plc and individual businesses to tap into new skills and cultures presented by our multi-cultural youth.
The apprenticeship could cover areas such as:

• Getting ready for export – How to get the culture and skills right
• Which markets and when – Getting in on the right stage of the product/category lifecycles in the different markets
• Researching overseas markets and consumer trends
• Developing the right products and propositions
• Working with the channels and partners

• Consumer engagement
• Digital communication and social media
• How to develop your global account management
• Pricing and margins
• Learn from your global successes and failures
• Documents and logistics
• Legal aspects – agreements, copyrights

The young people would benefit from classroom training, online support, mentoring and work experience in an exporting business. Time for a new apprenticeship

So, how can your business become better equipped to benefit from this changing world:

• Accept that the world is changing and that you have to change with
• Review all your partnerships, distributors and agents – are they fit for purpose
• Take a objective look at your company and your offerings through the eyes of a consumer in each of your markets
• Take on, at least, one Export Grower apprentice
• Do it now!

If you want to have to have a chat about how to develop a more global mindset, please get in touch.

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