When expanding one’s operations on an international level, there is always an element of transformation involved. Adaptation to new environments will generate the highest chance of achieving ones targets and avoiding confusion along the way. Exotically foreign markets usually have severely contrasting dynamics to those that one might be used to. Entering Africa is no exception. Fortunatly, Leads 4 Africa have a few tips to make your life and market entry campaign a little easier:.
Manners maketh the man. Many African communities adhere to conservative values and beliefs and therefore, a little politeness goes a very long way. Exhibiting the proper amount of respect, in the proper way to the proper people could be the difference between clinching the deal or not.
Greetings are also an important opportunity impress and delight. Nelson Mandela stated: “If you talk to a man in a language he understands; that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language; that goes to his heart.” A lot of African business hinges on the cultivation and maintenance of business relationships. Communicating in a native tongue, is a simple method of improving the likelihood of being likeable.
Adding to the point made above; cultures vary significantly across the continent of Africa. Methods of greeting or addressing various business professionals differ from country to country. In certain instances, religious practices dictate the flow of the day’s proceedings. Times of prayer or public holidays can all be completely different from one country to the next. One must do thorough research in order to establish the correct behaviour and times within which to do business.
Organizations with their headquarters in other parts of the world often find communication a frustrating exercise. In some instances the differences in time zones can influence the organizations operational capacity. These centralized methods of business should be avoided; Africa is notorious for its’ underdeveloped communications infrastructure (this is an issue that almost all African Governments have invested heavily into solving in the near future). If the command centre for regional operations is outside of the African continent, it will impede effective operations. Attempt to establish a Regional Headquarters on the continent to alleviate the stresses that might come with cross-continental communication. If this is not viable use a local company to negociate and head your business through.
Finally; one must be aware that Africa is a beehive of activity on all spheres of industry and social life. A continent with such a unique history has developed a unique will to grow; creating an immensely fluid environment. Political and social change happen frequently as Africans strive towards justice and equal opportunities. New developments, markets and incremental innovations are constantly being generated. To be successful one must be in tune with the rhythms of African business. Pay attention to current affairs and stay as informed as possible; inspect the local news regularly and network in order to make the right contacts.
In Africa, opportunities spring up quickly and a vigilant businessman is able to seize them. Being locally informed is a huge advatage, this is where Leads4Africa fits like a glove into your organizations' into Africa plans.