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OCBC SPOTLIGHT

Grooming a strong management team vital for int'l expansion

MANY Singapore businesses are making inroads overseas. Being a Singapore brand is a strength as a company eyes international expansion, especially if it is in the business of education.

MindChamps, for instance, has enjoyed leverage in different markets thanks to Singapore's reputation for rigour in the field.

Almost half of all small-to-medium enterprises today have entered other markets. Across industries, we find our own customers looking towards expansion even in the early stages of growth.

As destinations, Malaysia, Indonesia and China have market size and proximity to Singapore as key advantages; resource availability and acceptable costs make Vietnam, Myanmar and Thailand bright spots, especially for manufacturers.

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When a company gears up for internationalisation, however, it often finds it a challenge to field top-tier management while running the business at home, and driving market development efforts abroad.

Having supported many businesses in their regional expansion, we see numerous advantages in sending the 'A Team' overseas.

Such teams typically have high levels of internal trust, demonstrate resilience and adapt well to change. Their resourcefulness enables them to navigate an unfamiliar market environment readily, making them more effective in managing ambiguity and obstacles during the early start-up period.

The impact of having a strong team to support a successful engagement overseas is considerable. Even if yours is a young business, it is worthwhile to begin grooming a strong management team early on, especially if expansion across multiple geographies and locations is in your eventual plans.