Small businesses no longer sell just to customers in their communities. Globalization connects businesses and customers across the world. Companies open satellite offices to decrease production costs, forge relationships in new territories and access new consumer markets. The importance of communication in globalization is paramount because individuals from different countries, ethnicities, languages, cultural attitudes and other variations must understand one another and express themselves to another effectively in order to work together.
Individuals tend to look at the world from a viewpoint that incorporates their own particular background. So, a business owner is likely to develop and market a product based on the customers in their own country, at least initially. Globalization lets that business sell that same product internationally by working with other companies, but the business must communicate the benefits of the product from the perspective of partners and customers abroad.
Effective business communication helps business partners identify common goals and characteristics so that interactions take place in an environment of respect and understanding.
Business communication is also an important component of globalization because of the multiple platforms available to convey and receive messages effectively. In-person business communication can help build effective relationships because of personal contact, body language and proximity. Written communication allows international business partners more time to compose thoughts and accurately express intentions or concerns. Audio and video conferencing facilitate live business interaction at low cost. Teams also can collaborate by sharing documents and ideas online and by viewing each other's computers remotely so that they can work together.
International business communications globalization can help companies break down trade barriers. Knowing trade policies and conditions between countries allows companies to negotiate mutually beneficial terms, such as by adjusting pricing to reflect any shipping fees or freight costs.
Globalization relies on large consumer bases to purchase products and services. Business communication can include global marketing efforts that transmit a company’s products, mission and brand image to a wide audience. Without marketing-related business communications, companies may struggle to identify and reach customer bases to boost demand as production capabilities escalate.
Broad marketing campaigns can be strategically altered to take cultural variations and preferences into account throughout the global economy. For example, product names can be changed so that meaning isn’t altered. Knowing a product’s name translates into something undesirable, like “breaks often”, can help a company avoid a marketing disaster.
Businesses also can communicate with customers directly through social media. Determining what is popular in a particular country or region communicating with consumers and watching what they share online can help businesses develop, market and sell their products and services efficiently. Companies can communicate with whole markets at a time or engage with consumers individually.
Business communications also is important in globalization because companies increasingly use a multicultural workforce. This can work to great advantage when companies hire regionally experienced employees to represent their business in unfamiliar environments. Multicultural workers can tap into a global area’s culture, subtle preferences and buying habits and convey these to their employer via communication channels, including focus groups and survey reports.
Large companies can also rely on cohesive policies to effectively communicate their business’ culture, expectations and strategies to workers of different backgrounds. For example, the same company policy can be translated into different languages to accommodate the literacy abilities of workers whose first language is not English.