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From Local to Global: A Career in International Business Management

International Business Manager

Managing a business is a big task. One has to take care of operations, marketing, finance, Human Resources, or Information Technology. However, it becomes more complicated when the business has International legs too. Many businesses are spread across the borders of nations. Some of the business has sales in one part of the world and manufacturing in another part. Some businesses have customer care in a different countries. Thus, they need International Business Managers to handle the business.

International Business Manager manages trades of goods and services across the border. As an international business manager, you will be responsible for different laws and compliance, foreign exchange, business strategies in different countries, etc. Many times, international business managers also trade knowledge (like using research and development teams in different nations), capital (exchange of money after the transaction), resources (importing raw material or exporting finished goods), and technology (like resourcing technology from companies situated in a different country).

Why become an International Business Manager? 

International Business Manager is a person who manages trade of goods and services, technology, resources, capital, and knowledge across national borders at the international level. Facebook team expanding business in India is under the purview of an International Business Manager.  International Business is different as it happens in two nations with different laws and regulations, cultures, demography (population), etc. and also there are trade procedures involved in the business transaction. International Business Manager is an expert in trade procedures. International Business Manager researches potential nations for businesses; they work to understand the trade regulation of that nation, relation with native nations, trade, and business policies. They also create a business strategy to enter other countries or territories. Like it might e a good idea to enter one nation as a franchise, but in another country, it might be good to enter directly with owned business units. 

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  1. International Marketing Manager specializes in international strategies of export, franchising, joint venture, or full direct entry of an organization’s product or services into another country. They do this by either exporting a company’s product to another location or by entering through a joint venture with another organization in the new country or foreign direct investment into the target country. Based on these strategies then they develop the marketing plan for the company which might include advertising, promotions, hiring local celebrities, Facebook and Instagram accounts, and promotions, etc.
  2. International Financial Manager specializes in trading and making money through the exchange of foreign currency. They deal with money exchange and transfer with international dealings with business partners, customers, suppliers, lenders, etc.
  3. International Trade Law Experts specialize in all kinds of trade law, intellectual property laws, international disputes, cross-border transactions, dispute settlements, agreements under the World Treat Organization, International Monetary Funds, etc. They see the legal side of anything related to International business so that organizations do not suffer any penalty or break any law in the new country.
  4. International Business Development Manager specializes in identifying new markets and business opportunities. They seek new areas, regions, and new departments where exciting or new products or services can be sold. Most International business starts with business development.
  5. International Trade and Customs Manager specializes in handling internal logistics, customs compliance (customs are taxes that you pay when you import products from a different county), and supply chain management.
  6. International Transportation & Logistics Manager specializes in the different kinds of shipping and logistics modes available from one country to another. They manage the transport of cargo from one country to another.

What does International Business Manager do? 

As an International Business Manager, depending upon your specialization will take care of the following roles and responsibilities:

  • If you are working as an International Marketing Manager, then you will be responsible for all the activities related to marketing. You will coordinate with overseas clients, understand their requirements, prepare quotes, and negotiate. You will handle customers’ queries concerning technical doubts. You will coordinate with production, exports, and logistics for the timely processing of samples for approval (if required). 
  • If you are working as an International Finance Manager, then you will be responsible for all the money that comes into the organization and goes out. You will make payments to international suppliers, make payments from clients, handle their queries regarding safe payments, etc. 
  • If you are working as an International Trade Procedure Manager, then your role will be to ensure the free flow of trade within new countries. You will prepare documents, apply for an applicable license, pay fees, represent your company, etc. 
  • If you are working as an International Transportation & Logistics Manager in a logistics and trade company, you will look after Operations, handling of products from different clients, negotiating with them over pricing, doing documentation, ensuring payments are done, handling of products, communicating with customs, etc. 
  • If you are working in the International Business department, you will be responsible for identifying new markets. Like Jio might work to understand which new country they can enter. You will be responsible for finding a suitable strategy to enter a new market. McDonald’s entered into through Franchising (Where a local Indian partner took a franchise of McDonald’s in India. McDonald’s does not own restaurants in India). 

How to become an International Business Manager – Eligibility Criteria 

Undergraduate studies after school:

  • To become a Business Manager, you can take multiple pathways. You can study Business Management \ Business Administration in under graduation as B.B.A. or B.B.M. 
  • You can also study Engineering by taking a course in B.E. or B.Tech. 
  • Alternatively, you can study Economics with any other subjects in B.Com. 
  • You can also study Science, Commerce, and Arts with any subject under graduation.
  • Integrated B.A. LL.B. orB.Com. LL.B. or B.Sc. LL.B. or B.B.A. LL.B.  course.

Post Graduate studies:

  • After graduation, you can study Business Administration (M.B.A.) in International Business / International Marketing Management / International Finance Management / International Trade Procedure Management / International Transportation & Logistics Management/ similar subjects. 
  • You can also take International Trade Law.

Educational Fees

The educational fees to become an International Business Manager is somewhere around Rs. 140000 to 8000000. 

Job Opportunities

  • At the start of your career, you can join any logistics, transportation, or cargo company as a Sea Export Executive or Management Trainee, Air Fright Executive, Sea, and Air Export Executive, or similar roles. 
  • On the sales side, you can join a logistics company as an Assistant Manager of sales (Cargo). 
  • On the legal side, you may join MNCs as a Legal Counsel / Product Compliance specialist / etc. 
  • In most MNCs, you can start your career as an assistant manager (Marketing) assistant manager (Sales), or assistant manager (Finance). 

Some of the places where you will find opportunities:

  • Investment banking jobs. 
  • Logistics and shipping companies like DHL, etc. 
  • Cargo Transporters.
  • Hotels look for operations managers, marketing managers, and general managers. 
  • MNCs like P&G, HUL, etc.

Salary of an International Business Manager 

  • At the entry level, you will join as an assistant manager/ management trainee / Executive and will earn anything between Rs. 20,000 to 3,00,000 per month. Most IIM graduates earn on the higher side. 
  • At the junior level after 2-5 years of experience, you will be earning anywhere between Rs. 25,000 – 5,00,000 per month.
  • At the middle level of 8-12 years of work experience, your earning will rise to Rs. 40,000-10,00,000 per month. 
  • At the senior level after 12-15+ years of work experience, your earning will be between Rs. 50,000 to 25,00,000 or more per month. Few managers even earn more than that.

Career progression in this profession  

  • If you join any logistics, transportation, or cargo company as a Sea Export Executive or Management Trainee, Air Fright Executive, Sea, and Air Export Executive, or similar roles, then you will be promoted to Senior Sea Export Executive or Assistant Manager, Senior Air freight executive. Later you will be promoted to Sea Export Manager / Manager / Air Freight Manager. You will then become Divisional manager and then head of Exports, Sea Cargo, Air Freight, etc.  
  • On the sales side, you can join a logistics company as an Assistant Manager in sales (Cargo) and then become Manager of Sales (Cargo), Regional Head, and then VP. 
  • On the legal side, you may join MNCs as a Legal Counsel / Product Compliance specialist, etc. Then you can become 
  • In most MNCs, you can start your career as an assistant manager (Marketing) assistant manager (Sales), or assistant manager (Finance).

According to the Ministry of Shipping, 95% of India’s trade by volume and 70% by value is done by Maritime transport. Cargo shipping has increased by 4.8 % at main ports and around 9% at non-major ports in 2018. Thus, although the market share is big, maritime transport and logistics haven’t grown much in India compared to its GDP growth. Thus, the job growth rate in this sector is not as high as compared to other sectors. FMCG is another sector that hires International Business Managers. FMCG is the 4th largest sector contributing to India’s GDP. No, the government has allowed 100% FDI in single-brand retail and 51% in multiple-brand retail. This has opened the gates for many International FMCG companies investing in India. In 2020, the Indian retail sector will be over 1.1 trillion with an average 20-25% growth rate per annum. Thus, big growth and more International players will open gates for marketing, finance, sales, and operations jobs at the management level.

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