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Gary Cohn, former President and Chief Operating Officer of Goldman Sachs, once opined, 'Globalization has levelled the playing field for many emerging countries, which are now able to compete for jobs that used to belong predominantly to the developed world.' In an increasingly interconnected world, Globalization is no longer an option; it is a strategic imperative for companies aiming to achieve sustainable growth and maintain competitive advantage.

Given its overarching influence on every facet of business operations, understanding Globalization is crucial for C-level executives. Globalization is responsible for the rapid expansion of markets and the emergence of new competitive landscapes. The overarching purpose of Globalization is to encourage free trade and generate economic growth by eliminating barriers to international trade.

A study by McKinsey Global Institute highlights that more than one billion people have been added to the global labor market due to Globalization, and international trade has almost doubled since the 1990s. Furthermore, according to Accenture Strategy, 71% of executives believe that traditional value chains are being reshaped by Globalization and Digital Transformation.

Key Principles of Globalization Strategy

  1. Attune to Local Needs: While Globalization calls for expanding across borders, companies must tailor their approach to meet local customer needs and regulatory aspects. Customizing strategies to navigate the cultural, political, and economic disparities between nations is fundamental.
  2. Embrace Digital Transformation: Companies must leverage Digital Transformation to capitalize on the opportunities that Globalization presents. Through technology, businesses can overcome geographical boundaries, drive collaborative innovation, and reach a wider audience.
  3. Risk Management: With expansion comes increased risk and volatility. Companies must adopt robust Risk Management strategies to respond to the unpredictability of global markets and geopolitical instabilities.

Effects of Globalization on Strategic Management

Globalization has altered the very fabric of Strategic Management. A recent PwC report indicates that executives now focus more on global markets for growth, resulting in a change from traditional to global strategies. This shift has expanded the horizon for Strategic Planning, emphasizing the need for more extensive market research, wider competitive analysis, and more comprehensive Strategy Development.

The increased interconnectedness has also led companies to invest in global Operational Excellence programs. EY's 2019 CEO Imperative Study found that one in two global business leaders now consider Globalization and Operational Excellence as key areas where they must excel to differentiate from their competitors.

Key Considerations for Global Expansion

Before embarking on global expansion, companies must consider several factors:

To close this discussion, Globalization presents opportunities to attain a competitive advantage in the global marketplace. By developing a strategic perspective towards Globalization, companies can overcome potential drawbacks, and reap benefits on a global scale.


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