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Go global: Skills needed for success in International Business

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What are the skills needed for success in international business ? The world of international business is dynamic and exciting, with increasing numbers of opportunities being offered by this growing sector. However, it is not always easy to access an international environment when working long-term in the same company or country. Equally, finding international networking opportunities in this context can be challenging. 

If you are a professional looking to further your career in an international environment, a business leader who wants to explore more international opportunities, or an executive who could benefit from an international perspective, there are many ways that you can make global connections and explore the world of international business. 

What are the skills for an international business career?

How to explore international business career opportunities

Depending on your career history and your existing network, pursuing international career opportunities may seem difficult, if not impossible. However, there are a number of ways to explore an international career in business that will help you to get your foot in the door.

Here are some steps to take if you want to move your career to an international environment:

  • Build an international network. Networking is critical for anyone, and it is even more important for those seeking international roles. A vast international network can connect you with job openings and provide you with recommendations that make you more likely to be hired.
  • Develop hard skills such as language skills. Although English is widely used in international business, there is no doubt that speaking one or more additional languages is a great asset. This allows you to deal more effectively with international clients and is helpful if you decide to relocate overseas.
  • Develop your soft skills. While strong technical expertise is still essential, soft skills can mean the difference between survival and true success in international business.
  • Gain an internationally recognised qualification. An appropriate qualification from a well-known and reputable institution will show potential employers that you have the required skills and knowledge, no matter where you or they are located. The Msc in International Business Management will equip you for a range of roles in the international business sector.

How to seize international opportunities

Network Building

A global network is one of the most important tools for being successful in the international business world. Contacts overseas are invaluable for securing international roles, as well as being vital for anyone working in the international business sector in their own country. Furthermore, a strong international network allows you to have your finger on the pulse of the latest trends in your industry and exposes you to new ideas.

However, if you do not already have an extensive international network, it can be difficult to know how to get started in building one. Once you have a few connections, you can leverage those to build more, but how do you make those crucial initial contacts?

If you’re already considering furthering your education, then look into programmes that have high international attendance and rank well in diversity. At EDHEC Business School, we have a diverse student cohort with different backgrounds and experience from around the globe. Taking an online Master’s in International Business, for example, will put you in touch with a large number of executives, entrepreneurs, and future business leaders from all over the world — an excellent start to your international network.

The Top 4 Skills Needed for Success in International Business

Whether you are planning to seek a new career abroad, or launch your own business venture, these are the top 4 skills that you need in order to succeed in your new international career.

  • Cross-cultural communication skills. Any function in international business means working with people from a different country or background to yours. Knowing, for instance, how people from other cultures interpret workplace confrontation can help to avoid misunderstandings and facilitate better workplace communication.
  • Agile mindset. In today’s VUCA (volatile, uncertain, complex, and ambiguous) business environment, you must have the confidence to react and adapt quickly, thinking out of the box to solve problems. When a quick response is needed in a critical business situation, adaptive thinking means taking thoughtful action rather than yielding to the impulse. It also means accepting when old solutions are no longer working.
  • Emotional intelligence. As a modern manager or leader, emotional intelligence is imperative to handling difficult situations in an effective and resolution-based manner, all the more in an international environment.
  • Resilience. On a practical level, working across time zones and cultures involves long hours, but also failure and setbacks. Going hand-in-hand with emotional intelligence, resilience will allow to meet the inevitable challenges of global business, maintain motivation, overcome risks, and recover more quickly from difficulties.

What skills should I learn in 2021?

Gain an internationally recognised qualification

How online executive education can help you to build an international career? Along with excellent networking opportunities, there are a number of other ways that online executive education through a high-quality institution can be useful in developing a career in international business.

Here are just some of the advantages of EDHEC Online in this context:

  • Networking opens up new international opportunities for both office-based and remote positions. In an online learning environment, people are more likely to be open to online opportunities. This is ideal for those who want the flexibility of online work to be able to combine career and international travel.
  • Online English language courses are more accessible to international students, which enriches the cohort. The diversity of students from a range of different countries enhances the learning experience. Learning from other cultures can be very useful, and can provide inspiration for innovation in your home country or in your own business.
  • EDHEC Business School has a vast international network and opportunities for collaboration that students can take advantage of to develop an international business career.

Final thoughts

The international business sector can provide a range of exciting opportunities for those wishing to take their career overseas, and creates invaluable connections for executives who cannot or don’t want to relocate, but do want to bring innovation and ideas in from around the world.

A strong international network is essential for anyone looking to advance their career or grow their business in an international environment. Online executive education is one of the best ways to build your international network, offering excellent networking and collaboration opportunities thanks to a diverse student cohort.

If you want to further your career in international business, take a look at our online programmes.

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