“Global” doesn’t get the love that “local” does, but it should. Only 1 in 100 U.S. companies exports to global markets, where 85% of new business opportunities are. That means 99 out of 100 U.S. companies compete for only 15% of available opportunities. That results in only 12% of U.S. Gross Domestic Product being exports, whereas countries that embrace global and compete effectively have more than 50% of the GDP as exports, like Germany.
What’s going on here? This doesn’t make logical sense because besides prosperity, global is just a good thing. Why? Thinking and acting globally in business and personally creates connectivity, prosperity and additional benefits for those who engage. Those benefits include advancing mutual understanding and common good. Global success requires ‘win-win’ thinking, not just one side winning, and leaders competing globally not only benefit from more market access, but they think differently and better, which helps them in home markets, too.
Are Americans not as intelligent as Germans, or in some way naturally disadvantaged to gain more success? I don’t think so, and as a German American, I’m looking at it from both sides! Geographically the U.S. is more logistically challenged for some markets, but not others. Germany has a few years head start in its government supporting exports. Both countries require to overcome the basic issue that “foreign” can be perceived as lost jobs, war, risk, et cetera, whereas “local” can feel good, close and safe. This is partially due to “proximity” bias, which encourages any of us to care more for things that are close by.
We encourage everyone who is reading this to consider prioritizing their global approach, and gain more access, create more jobs and change the world for the better by becoming more engaged globally. We’ve started an initiative to encourage more leaders to access and gain the value from going global, and so to research, plan and grow globally, more successfully. Americans and good businesspeople anywhere are smart enough to do it, and Global Chamber is standing by to support achievement of more success.
World peace is a natural result of global trade. Trade encourages discussion, listening, understanding, flexibility, resilience, reasonableness, negotiation, compromise, commerce, sustainability and success. Global trade across economies also drives the investor “portfolio effect,” smoothing out the edges and impacts of recessions.
My first time living overseas was in Japan, responsible for Asia, at a booming economic time for that region. It happened that there was a recession during those years for the U.S., and I wasn’t able to see it, except for some bad decisions made by U.S. managers who didn’t have a global view, presuming everyone on the world was struggling. Absolutely not!
Everyone is busy, but none of us should be too busy to not stop for a moment and do the right thing. Most exporters have holes in their international activities, and that’s OK because we’ll make it through together. The opportunity is there, and the result will make everything better, if we collaborate and work together on growing globally.
Global is good. Not taking action is bad, especially right now as the world is particularly challenged on multiple levels. Invest now and get the benefit for yourself and your business.
Doug Bruhnke is founder and CEO at Global Chamber.
Global Chamber is a registered trademark of Global Chamber, LLC since 2014.
Photo courtesy of Global Chamber
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