Ricardo Leite talks about Internationalization for SP Diário

The historical process reveals that it is the essence of human beings to seek new horizons and innovate. This statement is more absolute when analyzed under the scope of entrepreneurship. In the 15th century, the entrepreneurial generation left maritime expansion as a legacy. A new continent was discovered; new routes were established. In the 17th century, the industrial revolution began and we witnessed the phenomena of large-scale production, as well as the creation of the so-called market economy. Entrepreneurs at the time gave rise to transnational organizations, as large-scale production required entering the foreign market.

We are now experiencing the intensity of the technological revolution. Identifying a human routine, productive or not, and automating it, satisfying it through an APP, for example, is a current motto. The COVID-19 pandemic has imposed profound changes on the most relevant relationships of human beings. Work became remote, business meetings became remote, the way of consuming gained new contours and, in this context, technology entered a new level, eliminating even more the borders of distance.

With this introduction, I want to highlight that the economic environment has gone and is going through an accelerated process of integration between the various agents in an intense and continuous way. In other words: the world is much smaller than it was a few years ago. Produce in China and sell to the United States; produce in the United States and sell to Europe; produce in Brazil and sell to China; develop software in India and market it through a US company; hiring a digital marketing company in Brazil to leverage business in other countries are just a few examples of activities that have become commonplace. Increasingly, the economic environment is developing in a virtually borderless world.

In this context, the following questions arise: how has your organization reacted to this historical process of innovation and the search for new horizons? How has your organization positioned itself in a shrinking world? Can your organization capture these changes and take advantage of the opportunities that arise in an increasingly dynamic international environment?

In Brazil, the chapter on the internationalization of companies has gained greater importance. Entrepreneurial leadership, regardless of the size of the organization, more than ever noticed all these changes and seeks to identify the means to insert itself in this globalized world. The window of opportunity has expanded even further as we have a highly favorable exchange rate for exports, not to mention that there is no longer the benefit of double-digit interest to remunerate capital that remained inert in the banks. Investing, innovating, expanding, qualifying are the options for business growth.

Where to start this internationalization process? My view: I have learned that people internationalize before their organizations. The path of the search for new markets, the search for the internationalization of companies, without the internationalization of the people who integrate or support these organizations will hardly occur or, if it occurs, it will develop in limits below the potential.

Now, if internationalization is a fact, a path that has already been traced, what have we done as individuals to equally internationalize ourselves and not miss the tram of history? I understand that talking about the internationalization of people, in a country where priorities are linked to the survival of so many individuals and families, may seem insensitive. However, in a continental country like Brazil, with more than 210 million people, there is a huge contingent that can walk the path of individual internationalization and perhaps contribute to generating opportunities for the less favored.

Knowing other languages, studying the history and culture of other countries, taking a course abroad, participating in an international organization, opening a checking account outside the country, making an investment abroad, even if small, constituting a person foreign legal entity as a vehicle for participation in other companies, creating a succession plan that contains international legal entities, seeking a second citizenship, building a credit history in the desired country, are examples of actions that each individual can consider in their personal internationalization process. By following this path, the vision will expand, the set of experiences in the external environment will bring more security to other steps and a new range of opportunities will unfold.

Allow me a personal example: at the age of 20, I participated in a volunteer project with more than 200 young Americans. Many said that participating in this project would be a waste of time and would delay my studies, as it was two years dedicated to this. However, the cultural interaction and my personal internationalization were priceless acquisitions for a 20-year-old. I understood that I needed to study abroad and, later, the desire to conquer pushed me to overcome any obstacles and thus obtain a master’s degree in International Commercial Law at a renowned university in the United States. These choices have made all the difference in personal, family and professional life. These were the initial steps of a history of internationalization.

Perhaps the most appropriate question is not what the organization you belong to has been doing to internationalize itself, but what you have been doing to seek your personal internationalization. Everyone has their own way. The important thing is to start where you are and take the steps you reach.

Source: spdiario.com.br

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