New website for Lee Iwan

7 08 2010

I have moved to a new website  LeeIwan.com!

Popular posts from the old site Lee Iwan Accumulated Experience will be updated and migrated, and new material added to the new site at breakneck speed.

By visiting and participating you will get insight and learn about the attitudes, actions and strategies that will increase results and reduce errors with international and Mexican business projects.

Examples:

  • How to effectively start a business relationship in Mexico
  • How to develop a strategic plan for the Mexican market
  • How to develop a realistic business plan – objectives and chronologies
  • How to creating trust and confidence from your first meeting
  • The “right way” to approach Mexican business people
  • How to find the right people in Mexico
  • How to integrate the secrets of doing business in Mexico into your activities and communications
  • How to avoid the most common mistakes that can sabotage you
  • How to construct a solid base of reliable  knowledge and contacts
  • How to focus and get results in each stage of business development:  investigation, cultivation, harvest
  • How to create a positive image based on actions and deeds
  • How to maximize your customer visits, trade fairs and commercial missions
  • How to avoid cultural mistakes in Mexico
  • How to use the power of patience to guarantee success
  • How to use communications to avoid misunderstandings and increase commitment to the business
  • How to avoid the stereotypes that will kill the deal
  • How to find the decision-makers in Mexico
  • How to find the resources and reliable information to make informed decisions
  • How to understand the Mexican business environment, how business people think, what they consider important, how they make decisions and why
  • How to surround yourself with support service experts to avoid costly start-up errors

Thanks for stopping by, please leave a comment, idea or your observations on how I might improve the site and information.

Lee

Website – Lee Iwan.com

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SAPICA 2008 – The footwear and leather goods fair

7 08 2008

SAPICA 2008 Spring/Summer

September 25 – 28, 2008

Poliforum Convention Center

Leon, Guanajuato, Mexico

promotion.sapica@cofoce.gob.mx

COFOCE, the World Trade Commission of Guanajuato, would like to invite you to attend the SAPICA Spring/Summer shoe fair in Leon, Guanajuato Mexico on September 25-28, 2008.

COFOCE is offering free individualized introduction and agenda services to qualified foreign buyers and visitors attending SAPICA 2008 in order to increase their chances of doing business during the fair.

COFOCE’S international trade experts will assist you in: making an agenda and appointments during the fair, translation (if required), pre-screening contacts and will provide detailed information about doing business with the Mexican footwear industry.

COFOCE will save your business time and money by allowing you to focus and negotiate with pre-screened Mexican footware manufacturers during SAPICA 2008 that can meet your needs and requirements.

If you are selling, investigating and sourcing men’s, women’s, children’s, or western footwear, or seeking manufacturers or contract manufacturing for your brand or designs, SAPICA 2008 is one event that should not be missed.

Take advantage of this special offer from COFOCE and SAPICA to find suppliers and partners in Mexico in order to maximize profits in 2009.

Contact Lee Iwan at promotion.sapica@cofoce.gob.mx for more detailed information.

What is SAPICA? SAPICA is the most important shoe fair in Latin America, drawing international buyers from the USA, Canada, Europe, Japan, and throughout Central and South America. The September edition will be featuring the Spring-Summer fashion for 2009.

How big is SAPICA? Last year’s fair drew over 850 exhibitors, +12,000 buyers and +35,000 visitors under one roof at the 484,000 sq. ft. modern Poliforum exhibition center in Leon.

Who should attend SAPICA? Footwear buyers and executives, purchasing agents, distributors, brand managers, agents, representatives, designers and anyone involved in the international footwear industry.

Why attend SAPICA? Mexico offers excellent competitive advantages including: Excellent logistics to the North American markets, quality components, current technology, know how, strong legal system and trademark protection, Free Trade agreements with 42 countries including USA, Canada, the European Union, Japan, and Israel among others.

How to get to SAPICA? Leon is located in the geographic center of Mexico and is served by American Airlines, Continental Airlines, Mexicana, Aeromexico, Click, and Aviacsa. There are numerous direct daily flights to Leon (BJX) from Los Angeles, Dallas, Houston, Chicago, Tijuana and Mexico City.

Where to stay during SAPICA? Leon offers numerous hotels with close proximity to the Poliforum Convention center including: Fiesta Americana, Holiday Inns, Real de Minas, La Estancia, Fiesta Inn, Mexico Inns, NE Hotel, Howard Johnson, Radisson, Enterprise Inn and many more.

When is SAPICA? SAPICA 2008 will be held September 25, 26, 27 and 28, 2008. Show is open to visitors and buyers on Thursday to Saturday from 9:00 AM until 8:00 PM, and Sunday from 9:00 AM until 4:00 PM.

How can I register for SAPICA? Contact Lee Iwan at promotion.sapica@cofoce.gob.mx for more detailed information on how COFOCE can organize your visit.

Links of Interest

Mexican Footwear – How to Find Competitive Footwear Suppliers in Mexico

COFOCEhttp://www.cofoce.gob.mx

SAPICAhttp://www.sapica.com

Hotels in Leon, Guanajuatohttp://www.squidoo.com/leonhotels

How to do business in Mexicohttp://businesssob.blogspot.com

Promexico, Buy in Mexicohttp://www.buyinmexico.com.mx

Promexico, Invest in Mexicohttp://www.investinmexico.com.mx





The challenge of international business

4 12 2007

I love international business.

It’s difficult, time consuming, requires more resources than selling in the national market, it’s complicated, frustrating, complex and incomprehensible at times.

It opens my eyes to new cultures, new ways of doing things, new languages and amazing people.

It has made me realize that there are many paths to a solution, and all of them are valid.

It is a highly competitive arena.

There are no second chances.

The people in the business of selling or buying products or services across borders live with this on a daily basis.

We like it.

It drives us crazy too.

It’s the same mentality that drives people to do crossword puzzles, go rock climbing, or take on huge tasks.

It’s about the challenge, the complexity, the rush of adrenaline when it all goes well and we succeed.

I realized how different I am from others, in my desire to be involved in global trade, during a conversation between three friends.  Two of us are involved in international commerce and the third lives in the local national market.

We stumbled on an idea that involves the consolidation of various local products (overstock and outdated inventory) and selling it via an auction process to international buyers.  It was a response to a very costly and real problem  that our friend lives with daily.  As we discussed it, our blood pressure rose, our hearts quickened, we got excited.

“Sounds like a lot a work, forget it, exporting is too much trouble” was the reply of our third friend.

I’ve heard the same comment many times before.

I watched the potential solution wither and die before us.

My friend is ready to live with a problem and loss of  income because he didn’t want to work harder.

He didn’t even consider hiring others, using specialized outsourcing, to work for him.

“It’s a lot of hard work.”

Of course it is.

Planning on exporting, importing or working internationally?

Find people who are genuinely interested,excited and turned on by the challenge.

The ability to embrace adversity, problems, and constant change as part of the daily working environment is key to working across borders and cultures.

Related Links

Looking for New?  It’s in another country

16 essential questions, the international business traveler’s quiz 

7 tips for doing business internationally   





Looking for New? It’s in another country

21 06 2007

Comments from yesterday’s post New is a requirement got me thinking about how living and working in another country moves your “comfort zone” and exposes you to lots of New.

There is a tendency to forget that this New soon becomes part of our routine and becomes integrated in our system of evaluation and processing of experiences.

Working internationally has been my biggest source of New for the past 30+ years in my personal and professional life.

It invigorates and challenges me.

It’s not always fun, or easy.

Living and working internationally has taught me:

  • Patience. It always takes more time than you think.
  • To listen before acting, reacting or responding.
  • To be humble. I don’t know it all, there is always something else to learn in order to understand.
  • To deal with frustration. When it’s not happening just the way you want it to, it means there is a different way to do it, find the alternative or live with the current situation, stop the whining and complaining.
  • New ways to solve problems. Not everyone culture approaches or attacks a problem the same way.
  • To analyze several solutions before making a final decision. What’s right at home may be 100% wrong in your current situation.
  • Most people are honest, fair and open, however being a strange face in a strange land brings out a certain criminal element that may find you irresistible (especially in the transportation sector).
  • People express themselves and their true feelings very differently, especially when it comes to solving conflicts.
  • Food ingredients and table manners are wildly different and can create physical and/or psychological reactions that were previously unknown to me.
  • There is no “right” way to live, solve problems or compete.
  • Politics and religion can be discussed, but should never be debated. Never.
  • Travel is not glamorous, restful, or easy. Takes a great deal of preparation, adaptation and improvisation to make it work.
  • Hospitality, manners and paying attention to detail are incredible important in making and maintaining relationships (host and guest).
  • Guides are important. These may be other business people, local residents, books or information about the people, place and culture. Learn, learn, learn and ask lots of questions, it pays off.
  • To be fair. Make deals and agreements as if you are going to be working with that company or individual for the next 20 years.
  • To see the “Big Picture”. Relationships, government policies, customs and cultural differences all interact and I begin to see larger issues being affected by my smaller decisions and preoccupations.

What about you?

What New did you confront, discover, embrace, enjoy or hate while living or working in another country?

Related Links

New is a requirement

International business tips

Cultural Misunderstanding- it can happen to you

Create great international business relationships

Great International Business Trip Results

16 Essential questions – the international business traveller’s quiz






Difference between a global, transnational, international and multinational company

18 06 2007

We tend to read the following terms and think they refer to any company doing business in another country.

  • Multinational
  • International
  • Transnational
  • Global

Andrew Hines over at BNET has brief and clear definitions of each of these terms, Get your international business terms right.

Each term is distinct and has a specific meaning which define the scope and degree of interaction with their operations outside of their “home” country.

  • International companies are importers and exporters, they have no investment outside of their home country.
  • Multinational companies have investment in other countries, but do not have coordinated product offerings in each country. More focused on adapting their products and service to each individual local market.
  • Global companies have invested and are present in many countries. They market their products through the use of the same coordinated image/brand in all markets. Generally one corporate office that is responsible for global strategy. Emphasis on volume, cost management and efficiency.
  • Transnational companies are much more complex organizations. They have invested in foreign operations, have a central corporate facility but give decision-making, R&D and marketing powers to each individual foreign market.

Andrews’s advice is if in doubt about the right term to use, try the generic term “international business”.

Related Links

Get your international business terms right

BNET





Mexico and India sign investment protection agreement

24 05 2007

Mexico has signed a 10 year bilateral investment promotion and protection program (BIPA) with India on May 21, 2007.

This is significant for several reasons.

  • Allows investment protection to foreign investors in both countries
  • Free repatriation of funds to investors
  • Allows Indian companies access to the USA and European market through manufacturing in Mexico
  • Offers protection of Intellectual Property (IP)
  • Opens the door for Preferential or Free Trade Agreement negotiations in the future

India’s government and private industry sees Mexico as a “trampoline” to the US market, and also entrance into Mexico and Central America.

I have no doubt we will begin to see some Indian investment in Mexico and India-Mexico joint ventures in the very near future.

I strongly recommend that Mexico review, simplify and speedup the time and reduce the costs related to obtaining a travel visa for Indian business people.

Related Links

India, Mexico sign investment protection agreement

India looks for key to NAFTA in Mexico

India eyes free trade with Mexico for better access to NAFTA





Are you on the right team?

21 05 2007

 When the focus at work is on providing a great product or service to the customer (maximizing) the perceived value of the product is higher for the customer, and they are willing to pay more.

This translates into more profit for the company.

When our focus is on maximizing profit for the company, management tends to rush toward cost cutting and/or reducing product quality (minimizing) many times resulting in reducing perceived product or service value for the customer.

The customers may not buy your product now, resulting in less profit for the company.

It’s all about providing a product or service that will be appreciated, sought out and embraced by the market.

Creating a product or service that is valuable to the market.

The more people want YOUR product, the more money they will pay for it.

It’s about listening to customers, creating new ideas, innovating, and taking calculated risks based on your expertise and understanding of your business.

It’s not easy.  Creating has never been easy.

Success is not guaranteed.  In fact the higher the risk the higher the potential payoff and profits.

But it sure is more exciting and rewarding than cutting pennies off manufacturing, administration, sales and logistics costs.

It takes a different type of leadership, management and employees to make this happen.

What team do you want to work with, lead or manage?

Related Links

The 6 Fundamental Concepts Behind Every Successful Business

Successful Managers Should Be Breaking the Rules

Even governments market