How Global Mindset Can Increase your Marketing Reach

Joy McGovern, Thunderbird School of Global Management - Search Engine Marketing 0 Comments | Add Yours

About The Author:

Joy McGovern, Ph.D. is an industrial/ organizational psychologist with more than thirty years of experience. Her special interests include identifying and developing people for global and expatriate roles and innovation. She is currently the Manager of Business Development, Global Mindset Institute at Thunderbird School of Global Management.

A Broader Appeal

As a strategic internet marketer, you want the strategies you use for your services or products to work…you want them to increase your visibility.  But there are built-in limitations particularly when you are transacting business in the global marketplace.  Your potential clients most likely grew up in a particular culture and this culture gave them a unique vantage point. This vantage point makes some things highly visible while rendering others non-existent.  Think of the purported multiple words that desert dwellers have for different kinds of sandstorms or that Eskimos have for snow as an example of this.   Most of us are blind to these distinctions but are probably hyper-sensitive to other types of stimuli that are a result of our culture and our interests.  Consider the ‘fascinators’ worn to the recent royal British wedding or an American teenager’s ability to tell you whether or not a particular type of sneaker is in style. 

What is ‘Global Mindset’?

Yet, there are people able to transcend their personal cultures and generate services and products that have a broader more multi-cultural appeal.  These people, when measured and assessed with the Global Mindset Inventory (GMI), have a higher “global mindset” score.

Mansour Javidan, PhD., Garvin Distinguished Professor and Director of the Global Mindset Institute at Thunderbird School of Global Management, ranked Number 1 in International Business, has spent much of his career studying differences in cultures and how that impacts peoples’ perceptions and expectations. 

Javidan and a team of global experts, through a rigorous scientific process, developed the GMI.  The GMI is an internet based assessment instrument which identifies a person’s ability to influence people different from them whether that difference is institutional, political, social or cultural.  The GMI is one of the few tools developed with an international sample.  The GMI is not simply an assessment that was developed in the US and then “exported” to other cultures, but rather the GMI was conceptualized and created with a truly global perspective.

Developing Your ‘Global Mindset’

Developing your Global Mindset will enable you to construct strategies and messages that resonate with markets throughout the world.  Most importantly, Mansour Javidan has collected data that empirically demonstrate that a Global Mindset can be developed and improved.  So, no matter what your current cultural or other  ‘blind spots’ may be your vision can be improved dramatically.

What Are the Components of a ‘Global Mindset’?

There are three main components, or capitals of a Global Mindset:  Intellectual Capital, Social Capital and Psychological Capital.  Within each Capital, there are three competencies which define that Capital.

Intellectual Capital

Intellectual Capital reflects your overall international knowledge.  The three competencies of Intellectual Capital are:

•    Global Business Savvy or how aware you are of international business and industry trends, such as business and marketing strategies, supplier chains and ways to assess international  risks and opportunities.
•    Cosmopolitan Outlook or your knowledge of different cultures. This includes their history, geography and recent world events all of which help provide background information as to why people from a particular culture think and act the way they do.
•    Cognitive Complexity or your ability to analyze and solve complicated problems and your ability to clearly communicate these solutions.

Intellectual Capital is the component that is most easily improved.  Deliberately reading magazines and books, watching TV shows and movies, accessing internet sites and attending lectures and classes with a global bend can greatly increase your Intellectual Capital. 

Social Capital

Social Capital reflects your ability to interact effectively with people from cultures different than your own.  It is your ability to engender trust and consists of the following three competencies:

•    Intercultural Empathy or your ability to understand and engage people from different cultures
•    Intercultural Impact or your relationships with people from multiple cultures and your ability to negotiate with people from other parts of the world.    Think, for example, of a Country Manager who has to negotiate successful with a corporate headquarters based in another culture, if he or she is to be successful.
•    Diplomacy or your ability to start a conversation with a stranger and to listen, integrate differences of opinion and create collaborative solutions.

Social Capital is in the middle of the three capitals in terms of ease of improvement.  The development of Social Capital requires that you increasingly seek out, interact, receive feedback and make improvements in your effectiveness with people from backgrounds different than your own.

Psychological Capital

Psychological Capital reflects how motivated you are to develop the ability to deal with people who are different from you.  This includes:

•    Passion for Diversity or your desire for new and unusual experiences.  You may enjoy traveling, particularly to foreign countries.  You would not be the kind of person who would travel to New York City of San Francisco and then choose a chain restaurant for dinner.
•    Quest for Adventure or your willingness to test yourself and put yourself into challenging situations.
•    Self-Assurance.  This competency includes your energy level because dealing with people who are very different from you requires stamina.  It also includes your ability to maintain your composure in uncomfortable and difficult situations.

Psychological Capital is the most difficult domain to improve because it requires changing your natural reactions.   You can do this by deliberately exposing yourself to new and uncomfortable settings.  In our experience, this can be most easily accomplished by seeking advice from a mentor or coach.

Extending your Global Influence

Marketing is about increasing awareness, appeal and influence. As a strategic internet marketer having a broader, more global approach, i.e. a stronger ‘Global Mindset’, will extend your online reach and impact on others who are very different from you. 

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