As global industry expands, the barriers to entry in foreign markets decrease. Many of you may find yourself submitting more and more international proposals. These proposals could represent huge wins and influence the future direction of your company, but should they look and say the same things as proposals submitted in your home country? The answer is maybe, here are few things to keep in mind when submitting international proposals.
Respect the Customs and Culture of the Prospect’s Country
This may seem obvious but some research on standards and practices in the prospects country will be vital. A quick example of this would be the use of specific colors. The color white is the most obvious discrepancy as in western culture the color white is seen as a symbol of purity, innocence, marriage and even angelic while in many eastern cultures white represents sorrow, death and misfortune.
Punctuation, Capitalization and Spelling
If replying to a foreign bid who may not be a native speaker of the submitted language within the proposal it is best to use their spelling conventions when there is a discrepancy between the languages. A simple example of this is do they use “z” or “s” when spelling certain words? You should also try to keep your punctuation and capitalization to standard practices and not overuse either. One thing you will want to be sure, no matter what approach you take, is to keep it consistent. Choose a style and tone and stay with it.
When submitting to non-native speakers graphics can be an extremely valuable asset to make clear and concise points. A visual representation of your main points will make a huge impression if a language barrier starts to form. You should also keep these graphics simple and clean to ensure easy understanding.
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