How to Excel in the Global Marketplace Despite Uncertainty and Change

As technology connects and brings the world closer together than ever, companies of all sizes must start looking outside the United States for customers. While the U.S. accounts for roughly 30 percent of the global market share for consumer goods, more and more countries are expanding their middle class and growing their spending capabilities.

As such, brands must start expanding their efforts and playing on the world stage. Unfortunately, the global marketplace has far more moving parts, meaning more obstacles and challenges. Thankfully, with the right planning and strategies, it’s relatively easy for companies to overcome these setbacks.

Understanding the Factors That Drive Global Change

Part of the reason it’s difficult for companies to compete globally is that the marketplace can change on a whim based on factors like:

  • Geopolitical conflicts and wars
  • New legislation and regulations
  • Economic instability in different regions
  • Supply chain constraints

Each component can affect your ability to thrive overseas, but the marketplace isn’t a single bloc. Some regions may be more tumultuous than others, so you must know where to expand and market your brand.

How to Adapt to Change and Uncertainty in the Marketplace

Visionary leaders like East West Bank Chairman and CEO Dominic Ng understand that adapting to change and evolving to meet customers’ shifting demands is critical to success. Over three decades, Dominic’s leadership has transformed the bank from a small savings and loan association with $600 million in assets into the largest publicly listed independent bank in California, with assets over $68 billion.

Here are three ways to adapt to change to help your brand succeed.

1. Create a More Flexible Business Model

A business model is the foundation of any company, but is yours adaptable and capable of reacting to new changes in the marketplace? For example, let’s say you’re sourcing raw materials for your products from a single provider. What happens if that provider raises prices because of increased demand, or can’t grow to meet the demands of your company? A flexible business model allows for growth and change without disrupting the core ideology of the brand. In many cases, this means not having single points of failure. 

2. Leverage Agile Decision-Making Practices

A business is only as good as its leadership team. If executives and managers are slow to act and react, the company can suffer as a result. Similarly, a brand that focuses exclusively on profitability without looking at the larger picture may set itself up for failure. Knowing this, decision-makers must have a flexible growth mindset. Just because something has worked in the past doesn’t mean it will continue to work in the future.

3. Focus on Innovation and Creativity

Indeed, success relies on the ability to come up with creative solutions and leverage them as much as possible. If an idea or product is “ahead of its time,” you have to work hard to adapt it to the current landscape and guide the marketplace to see the value of that idea or product.

The Bottom Line: Change Can Be Good for Business

In many cases, the secret to success lies in your mindset. If you view change and uncertainty as liabilities, you’ll struggle to overcome any setbacks and challenges. However, if you can see these immutable constants as assets, you’re more likely to come out ahead. While you can’t stop the world from changing, you can adjust how your business reacts to it.