Do you have what it takes to be a successful international association manager?
Your association might be international, but do you have what it takes as a manager and a leader?
a.) Curiosity and Empathy - Are you naturally intrigued by different cultures around the world with their unique politics, languages, food, business practices and communication styles? Do you identify with how much people are similar and have in common; or do you focus on how they differ from how things are done at home?
b.) International Exposure - Managing a truly international organization is not a spectator sport, you need to get out in the field. There is no substitute for travel and to learn first hand how things work in different parts of the world. Putting your self in an environment where you do not speak the language and are clearly outside your comfort zone will make you a stronger manager.
c.) Communicating and Building Relationships - It is critical to learn how to communicate with colleagues and partners for whom English may not be their mother tongue. International engagement forces us to be better listeners, as well as to be more efficient and direct with our own messages.
Building relationships internationally requires persistence and patience in order to build hard won trust.
Managing an international organization can be the most rewarding and stimulating challenge of your professional life.
By building your global management competencies, you can better position yourself for an association management career that pays dividends in life experiences and professional achievement.