Saturday, August 30, 2014

What Is Genius?

©2014 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration." - Thomas A. Edison

Friday, August 29, 2014

Here's Why You Should Go Global

I was thrilled to become a LinkedIn Influencer and contribute articles in the area I am passionate about:  global small business.  LinkedIn Influencer is invitation-only, so Influencers must be invited to contribute.

Here's my latest article.  Pulse picked it up as a top selection!

10 Reasons To Go Global

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Everything You Want to Know About Doing Business In Poland

Poland and the United States have a close bilateral relationship, fostering strategic and commercial cooperation. U.S. companies are active in Poland and have invested heavily since 1989 when the country transitioned to a market-driven economy. Abundant opportunities remain for U.S. firms in Poland.

To learn everything you want to know about doing business in Poland, read the U.S. Department of Commerce's Country Commercial Guide 2012:  Doing Business In Poland

In addition, the World Bank Group offers an even more current economy profile on Doing Business in Poland.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The Demand for Creative Global Entrepreneurs

Even if you come from a long line of entrepreneurs in a family it doesn't necessarily mean you are cut out for entrepreneurship or will become a successful entrepreneur.  Here's what one international student - Vikas Jagwani - studying in the United States has to say:
Being an international student for the past couple of years has made me more educated about the U.S. and some of the policies that are different from my home country. Growing up in a family full of entrepreneurs meant entrepreneurship is not a new concept for me, but becoming one is a challenge.
Vikas, from the United Arab Emirates, is a sophomore at Drury University, where he majors in accounting, finance and economics.  Find out why he thinks entrepreneurship is a good path of study for international students.

Pursue an Entrepreneurship Major, Minor as an International Student

Monday, August 25, 2014

Today in Global Small Business: How to Deliver to Customers Globally

What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Free: Sunrises and Sunsets

©2014 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"There's a sunrise and a sunset every single day, and they're absolutely free. Don't miss so many of them." – Jo Walton

Friday, August 22, 2014

Globalization Reconsidered: What Global Flows Mean in a Digital Age

According to McKinsey & Company, global flows are creating new degrees of connectedness among economies—and playing an ever-larger role in determining the fate of nations, companies, and individuals; to be unconnected is to fall behind.

A new McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) report, Global flows in a digital age: How trade, finance, people, and data connect the world economy, examines the inflows and outflows of goods, services, finance, and people, as well as the data and communication flows that underlie them all, for 195 countries around the world.

Learn more:  Global flows in a digital age | McKinsey & Company

Thursday, August 21, 2014

4 Executives Share Their Experiences Managing Global Organizations

Harvard Business Review asked four executives to share their experiences managing global organizations.
  1. Luc Minguet, head of group purchasing at Michelin, a global tire company based in France, describes how the tire maker trains managers to embrace cultural understanding and flexibility.
  2. Eduardo Caride, regional director for Spanish-speaking countries in Latin America at Telefónica, the Madrid-based fixed and mobile telephony company, explores the benefits of moving managers across borders.
  3. Takeo Yamaguchi, corporate officer for human capital at Hitachi, a Tokyo-based conglomerate with operations worldwide, details the conglomerate's efforts to create standardized HR practices across 948 companies.
  4. Shane Tedjarati, president and CEO, global high-growth regions at Honeywell (Shanghai-based), discusses how the industrial powerhouse is shifting its strategy toward new regions, such as China, India, Vietnam, and Indonesia.
Read:  Voices from the Front Lines - Harvard Business Review

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Avoid These 9 Common Importing Mistakes

Ready to source that new product idea of yours?  You can feel the excitement and want to shout out to the world "wait until you get your hands on this product!"  But then you realize, oh, I have to find a manufacturer for it first.  As you begin the process, keep these nine common importing mistakes top of mind.  By addressing these potential pitfalls, you will save yourself time and money, enjoy peace of mind and manage a flawless import.

Read:  9 Importing Mistakes to Avoid When Sourcing a New Product

Monday, August 18, 2014

Today in Global Small Business: 10 Great Books on Globalization

What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Unthink the Ordinary

©2014 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
Are you curious about the foot sculpture at Oak Street Beach (Chicago)?  Me too. That's why I took the photo above and then did a little research. Here's what I found.

Read:  Giant Foot Sculpture at Oak Street Beach

The purpose of the sculpture is to create buzz for Magritte: The Mystery of the Ordinary, 1926-1938 exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago (through October 13, 2014) and challenge you to unthink the ordinary.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Third-Party (3PL) Internet Platforms Offer Stepping Stones to Export Success

Third-party (3PL) Internet platforms such as Amazon, eBay, Rakuten, Etsy and CafePress all offer stepping stones to export success provided its visitors are in line with your ideal target market. They are easy to use, have a global reach, and can help you sell more goods worldwide at a profit.  These platforms also allow you to test the salability of your product on someone else's proven successful infrastructure before making a substantial investment to set up an e-commerce site from scratch.

In "Amazon Helps Mom-And-Pop Store in Barcelona Reach Global Village," the reporter talks about how small businesses in Spain use web-based platforms to escape domestic slumps or to drive additional growth to their existing business.

According to Javier Alvira, head of [Amazon's] the country's third-party operations in Spain:
"Spain is the fastest-growing market for the Amazon logistics service which handles deliveries for retailers"
Pictured:  Barcelona port

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Please Join Me in Utah on September 24th For an Export Readiness Discussion

For those who are in the area, please join me on September 24th in Utah for the Utah Global Forum where I will be speaking on how to get export ready.
Any company leader with an intent in growing or starting their company in exporting should attend the Utah Global Forum (UGF), presented by Governor Gary R. Herbert. UGF is Utah’s premiere international event organized to connect Utah business owners with the global market and to showcase what makes Utah great for foreign investors. The event will attract a broad domestic and international business audience and will inspire attendees to start or increase global trade and investment. The forum will be held Sept. 24 in the Salt Palace, Grand Ballroom. 
For more information and to register, visit:

GlobeTrade Founder to Speak on Increasing Exports at Utah Global Forum

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

There's Plenty of Room For Improvement On Small Businesses Selling Abroad

In Jeff Kearn's article published by Bloomberg Businessweek, "Wine-Infused Ice Cream Boosts U.S. Small Company Exports," he talks about how small companies build global brands, why there's plenty of room for improvement to help small businesses sell abroad and how skepticism is the main challenge in working with small firms to expand beyond the nation’s borders.

A hat tip to Jeff for including my comments:
Some business owners have doubts about repayment, a consideration when one big unpaid bill can threaten their future, said Laurel Delaney, the Chicago-based founder of GlobeTrade who’s been helping entrepreneurs sell abroad since 1985. Still, she says insurance can cut risk.

‘Growth Potential’

“They’re just not realizing their growth potential,” she said. “You need to develop a global mindset.” 
Read the article:  "Wine-Infused Ice Cream Boosts U.S. Small Company Exports"

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Today in Global Small Business: The Loss of a Great Global Comedic Genius

What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:

Monday, August 11, 2014

The Cloud Is Redefining the Small Business Playing Field

Will small businesses embrace the cloud for efficiency and global growth purposes?  A few experts -- Steve King, Partner, Emergent Research who we've been following for a number of years, Terry Hicks, Vice President and General Manager, QuickBooks Online Ecosystem, Intuit and Joshua Reeves, CEO & Co-Founder, ZenPayroll -- have an answer for us with their new report "Small Business Success in the Cloud."  The authors say "the cloud is redefining the small business playing field."

If you are on a fence about whether to get in the cloud, read: Dispatches from the New Economy: Small Business Success in the Cloud.

Saturday, August 09, 2014

Watching Things From Another Perspective

©2014 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"I like to turn things upside down, to watch pictures and situations from another perspective." - Ursus Wehrli

Friday, August 08, 2014

Bad Move on Russia's Part

By now you've heard the latest news - Russia bans food imports from U.S., E.U.  So if you are exporting meat, fish, fruit, vegetables and milk products from the United States to Russia, your business will more than likely be impacted for a year.

This move by Russia has come in retaliation for sanctions we ("we" equals United States, European Union, Norway, Canada and Australia) imposed on Russia, which is accused of providing weaponry and other support to pro-Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine.

The Russian shoppers may feel biggest impact. 
Although the U.S., Canada and the European Union together will take more than a $17.5 billion hit, Russian consumers may feel it more than Western farmers.
For the record, the United States exports about $1.2 billion in food and agricultural goods to Russia, less than one percent of total U.S. agriculture exports.   We'll take the smallest hit but nonetheless, according to US News:
The largest U.S. export to Russia is poultry, mainly chicken, followed by tree nuts such as almonds, and also soybeans. In a statement, the National Chicken Council and the USA Poultry and Egg Export Council said Russia buys a little more than $300 million in U.S. chicken annually, about 7 percent of the industry's total exports.
The good news on US poultry based on the National Chicken Council (NCC):
"We do not expect that a Russian ban on U.S. poultry imports will have a great impact on our industry," the NCC said in a statement. 
In the grand scheme of things, a small blip on the international trade radar.

Photo:  What Russia produces lots of ... sugar beets (seeds).

Thursday, August 07, 2014

A Global Effort to Understand the Ebola Virus

The world is scared.  The fears surrounding Ebola are those of the unknown, as a concerted global effort is under way to better understand the virus, contain it and treat victims in the absence of an approved vaccine or drug.

According to Knowledge@Wharton:
Beginning in March this year, Ebola has thus far claimed 867 lives in the four West African nations of Guinea, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Nigeria; another 1,603 people are suspected of, or have a confirmed, Ebola infection, according to latest updates from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). It is the worst Ebola outbreak since the virus was first discovered 38 years ago in Sudan and Congo.
Learn more on Kent Brantly, the 33-year-old American doctor infected with the Ebola virus and 59-year-old Nancy Writebol, another Ebola-infected American aid worker.

Read:  Weighing the Risks in the Ebola Battle

Are you scheduled to travel internationally any time soon?  Be sure to check the U.S. Passports and International Travel before you book your flight to consider very carefully whether you should go to a country at all.

More on what's happening with the Ebola virus:

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

The World's 25 Largest Marketing Research Firms

Formerly titled the Honomichl Global Top 25 Report, the AMA Gold Global Top 25 Report was launched some nineteen years ago to track the revenue growth and organizational size of the world’s largest market research firms. Through the years, only a handful of firms came to dominate the marketing research industry.

According to the report, the firms in this year’s Global Top 25 list have grown over the years, together reaching an estimated $21.5 billion in annual revenue in 2013, which represents about 54% of total worldwide expenditures on marketing, advertising and public opinion research services for all for-profit firms as estimated by ESOMAR.

From a global standpoint:
In 2013, 55% of the Global Top 25 firms reported revenues from countries outside of their home countries, down slightly from 54% in 2012. Only one firm—Video Research in Japan—reported revenue only from inside of its home country. At the other extreme, 93% of Ipsos’ revenues came from outside France.
Read on to learn about the growing internationalism of research firms, and the continued best practices they implement.

The 2014 AMA Gold Global Top 25 Report

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

Imagine a Paperless Fast-Payment Future

Taulia provides cloud-based invoice, payment and dynamic discounting management solutions.  It also makes it possible for AP departments to operate in a virtually paperless environment - from eliminating paper invoices to storing supplier documents electronically.

As Taulia states on its website:  "With Taulia, you can have more efficient processes, faster communication and more secure information – without ever wasting a single tree."

(One quick comment, talk about the "Old Boys Network:"

Additional press on Taulia:
Learn more about Taulia.

Monday, August 04, 2014

Today in Global Small Business: Innovative Wearable Technology Brand LeChal

Wavebreak Media/Thinkstock
What's affecting me, my clients, my colleagues and other global small business owners:

Saturday, August 02, 2014

What Are You Materialistic About?

©2014 Laurel J. Delaney.  All rights reserved.
"Cars and cameras are the two things I let myself be materialistic about. I don't care about other stuff." - Louis C.K.

Photo:  The classic Ford Thunderbird

Friday, August 01, 2014

China's Power: It's Overtaking the US as the World's Largest Economy

As Euromonitor International says, "China and the USA may be economic rivals, but beyond the headline figures, divergent trends are apparent in both countries. This white paper provides a glimpse into both markets, highlighting the complexities of doing business in each."

Download the white paper (requires quick registration) to see what the impact of China's power will be on industries and consumers worldwide:  China Overtakes the US as the World's Largest Economy