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American Businesses Still Need to Maintain a Global Focus

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

EAST GREENWICH, RI—Globalization will continue to be an important factor for American business, even as the new administration rethinks free trade agreements and looks to bring jobs back to the US, according to The Society for the Advancement of Consulting® (SAC).

Global Brands Transcend Nationalistic Focus

We live in an interconnected global brand world and that’s unlikely to change, according to Linda Popky, president of Redwood Shores, CA-based strategic marketing firm Leverage2Market Associates, and author of the book Marketing Above the Noise: Achieve Strategic Advantage with Marketing That Matters.

“Many Americans don’t know from where their favorite brands originate.  Brands like Sony, Samsung, Philips and others are as much at home in American lives as brands that originate in the US,” she says. “Plus, most brands source at least part of their content from other countries.

“Which has more US-produced content—a GM vehicle or a Honda sedan made in Ohio? The iPhone is designed in the US but manufactured in Asia. Which is more important—the physical device, or the intellectual property and design that makes an iPhone possible? We don’t know, and it’s unlikely that we’ll start to care enough to change our purchasing habits.”

Thriving in a Year of Disruption

Dr. Maynard Brusman, a consulting psychologist, executive coach, and emotional intelligence/mindful leadership expert, notes that 2017 will be a year of disruption. “Every industry will be affected by some kind of discontinuity or disruption – whether it’s the introduction of new business models or innovative technologies.”

According to Dr. Brusman, “Toprepare for our volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous multilateral world, resilient company leaders need to introduce radical change in their organizations. The companies with a higher probability of success will see disruption as an opportunity to instill a positive sense of urgency in their organizations. Organizations that flourish will need a clear sense of purpose. Everyone in your company will need to be engaged, and play to their strengths within a culture of trust and collaboration.”

Dr. Brusman advises clients, “One of the most important ideas is to resist fear and develop a growth mindset.”

The Fundamentals Still Apply

“The world may seem more uncertain than ever right now, but uncertainty is not new,” notes Rebecca Morgan, founder of Fulcrum ConsultingWorks, Inc. “For most industries, patience is a virtue when considering these extrinsic challenges. We all need agile processes that enable us to respond to the unexpected.  We need triggers to know when the changing winds require decisions. But retain focus on those factors that will significantly impact your industry and your business regardless of fluid political leadership, tariffs, trade pacts, and labor laws.”

Morgan addresses this topic in her recent book Start Smart Finish Strong: Forging Your Path to Operational Excellence and Long-Term Success in the Manufacturing World. “There arerules that haven’t changed, and will not. The fundamentals still apply.  The rules of international trade may indeed change, but the importance of leadership, teams, people, strategy, and effective supply chain management will remain. So, too ,will the consequence of effective problem-solving, harnessing the power of data, and embracing technology for the right reasons,” she adds.

Global Trade Will Continue

“Be prepared for continued disruption and changes amidst a continued global outlook,” points out Lisa Anderson,known as The Manufacturing ConnectorSMand president of LMA Consulting Group, Inc., Claremont, CA. 

“Globalization will continue to change at a quick pace as trade agreements evolve, risks emerge, and opportunities are uncovered. There will be a resurgence of manufacturing in the U.S.; however, trade will not come to a standstill. The best companies will continue to find opportunities globally while automating, leveraging technology, staying agile and building top talent.

“Those who remain committed to these basics, while continually adjusting with an eye to strategy and a willingness to take prudent risks, will leave their competition in the dust in this new global supply chain,” she notes.

America Will Still Dominate

“Be prepared for a decline in continental Europe’s economy, increasing investment in the emerging African continent, and a resurgent Japan,” said SAC CEO Alan Weiss, PhD.

“The American economy will continue to dominate global trade with a renaissance in manufacturing and healthy growth of small business,” Weiss said.

 
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