If you want to find great success as a business owner, you’re eventually going to need to expand. While there are plenty of places to expand to in the United States, some of the emerging markets in places like Asia present golden opportunities for businesses to make millions.

However, exporting your business idea overseas isn’t as simple as expanding to the next city over from your hometown. Here are a few things you need to understand in order to expand your company overseas.

1. Understand International Politics

If you want to expand your business into a foreign nation, it’s not going to be as simple as signing a few forms and calling your bank to obtain a business loan. Instead, you are going to need to do some politicking to work within the foreign system that exists in another nation. Learning about your target country’s business laws and developing diplomacy skills will allow you to build the relationships needed with to make that possible.

2. Understand Other Cultures

At the core of succeeding in business overseas is understanding the culture of another nation. This includes understanding the language, the daily lives of average citizens, how their government operates, their religious beliefs and values, and much more. A master’s degree in diplomacy can help you immensely if you want to learn how to deal with nations in general, but it’s advised that you extensively research and visit the specific country you’re aiming to expand to. You should also be familiar with their market and how your industry will fit into it.

3. Network

Good teamwork is required for the success of a company whether large or small. However, if you don’t have the connections to make things happen, you won’t be able to build the team you need. Connect with anyone who can help you network with important leaders, foreign workers, and local suppliers in your target country. Knowing the right people will give your overseas branch a head start so that you won’t have to build it from the ground up.

4. Keep Learning Business Skills

Beyond the cultural and legal differences from country to country, there isn’t that much different between maintaining diplomatic relations between countries and maintaining good business relations between a parent company and its foreign branches. They both require the same kind of skill set. Keep your business skills sharp and professional. Besides the skills needed to expand overseas, you will gain skills in resolving conflicts, tact, and assertiveness that will benefit you as a business owner in general.

Overall, there is a lot that has to go into a foreign expansion. However, with the knowledge and skills discussed above, the entire process should be much smoother. You will be much closer to making an international name for your company.

About the Author

headshotDixie Somers is a freelance writer and blogger for business, home, and family niches. Dixie lives in Phoenix, Arizona, and is the proud mother of three beautiful girls and wife to a wonderful husband.