DNA of a Global Organization, Written by Phil Ventresca, M.B.A.

Businesses today are struggling with establishing a true identity in an ever-changing global market.  Whether they have revenue generating businesses outside of their domestic geography or utilize teams and resources in a virtual configuration, the bottom-line is that most are feeling the pain of becoming global.

Over the past fifteen years technology, market demand, and talent accessibility have forced many organizations to seek relationships outside of their domestic borders.  This widening of their footprint has created challenges such as talent acquisition/management, infrastructure support, and general cultural intelligence.

Successful globalization efforts are most commonly focused on the knowledge that any single component of the DNA strand will not support a global business model alone.  Thus, companies are paying attention to assessing their global needs, existing business infrastructure, and talent pools to ensure they are aligned and capable of meeting the requirements of a sustainable model.

Regardless of the company’s future goals, they must ascertain a current state in order to benchmark and determine the gaps necessary to close.  Just as importantly, they need a clear picture of what their future looks like, which should support the organization’s strategic plan.

Not all companies need to operate globally at the same level.  In fact, there is nothing that says we cannot isolate business and, for that matter, products that represent a more global footprint than others.  This is the essence of a modern and agile organization.  Where companies fall short in this model is at the initial needs assessment and planning phases.  Many times, we find ourselves trying to manage “off-shore” operations, geo-specific Lines of Business and/or virtual resources without the appropriate tools or training to do so.  Thus, we see loss of productivity, attrition, and project failures at a higher percentage.

Unfortunately, these management failures are usually attributed to the global and cultural aspects of the environment, rather than assessing a deeper root cause.  Regardless of your location on the planet, your purpose and your mission, all companies need a plan that aligns the DNA.

Some organizations can easily identify the gaps and thus point toward solutions with more clarity.  These are usually the companies who have ventured down the path of change beyond the 50% mark and can see their goals clearly.  However, that is not the case for all companies and honestly, not the majority.

Far too many times, we see companies going global for the sake of catching the wave.  Truth be told, each business is different and the approach to establishing the best forward path must also be unique.  The topic of globalization is vast and complex, far too complex to serve it justice in a 1500 word article.  That being said, the comments found in this article are built on practical experiences and represent the best and worst of what we have seen clients come across.