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  • Trending Skills for a Promising Career

    Dr. Anuradha Pathak, Associate Professor, IIMR


    Over the years, the outlook of business has expanded from being domestic to now being global, making it more dynamic, uncertain and complex. Increase in cross border trade has led to shrinking of world markets providing wider job prospects and  calls for entirely different set of employability skills to be successful in this new landscape.  What employers look in are a combination of hard skills set and soft skills set, usually referred as hybrid skills.


    Hard skills are specific to the job and are must to successfully performed job. They are acquired through various Degree/ Diploma and Certification Programmes. These skills can also be learnt through short term training programmes.Some of the hard skills required to be successful in International Business are:


    • Subject Domain Knowledge: Expertise in any or more fields like International Economics, International Finance, Global Laws &Taxation, Global Marketing, International HRM, International Logistics along with core areas like Export Procedures, Import Management, Global Market Research, Foreign Trade Policy and Macro environmental factors- Economic, Politico-Legal, Socio-Cultural, Demographic and Technological factors).


    • Computer Literacy: All employees are expected to possess basic knowledge of computer technology including Microsoft Office Suite, Adobe Creative Suite, HTML and other technology based platforms. It also includes a substantial exposure to Digital Communication, Database Management, Learning Management System, Search Engine Marketing, Content Management System and Cloud Computing.


    • Analytical Skills: It refers to the ability to collect and analyze the data and use the information to solve company’s problems and make decisions to improve upon its overall productivity and success. 


    Soft Skills on the other hand do not depend on the acquired knowledge. These are not job specific but are desirable to perform the job well. It includes communication skills, personality traits, social and emotional intelligence, attitudes and as such that enable people to work well with others and achieve their goals complementing with the hard skills. Top trending soft skills in International business are as follows:

    • Communication Skills: It refers to the ability to convey your ideas effectively and efficiently. You need to master in how to communicate with people from different cultures, giving due consideration for religion and cultural etiquette. It could be verbal, written or presentation skills with proficiency in one or two foreign languages. Now a day’s new ways of communication have been developed on web and social media platformsallowing companies to reach and attract customers from every corner of the world.


    • Adaptability: Workplace is full of diversity. People from different generations with different culture, views, attitude and motivation work simultaneously in organizations. So you must be flexible and adaptable to the workplace. If you lack certain skills you can make up for them by collaborating with peers and working in teams.  Adaptive thinkers succeed in an ever-changing environment, making them well placed for success in international business


    • Creativity: Creativity is essential multinational firms. It is one of the most sought skills in international business, the capacity to think out of box. Being creative, you are better positioned to respond promptly to ever changing business environment, may it be redesigning marketing campaign or product design.


    • Networking Skills & Collaboration: Networking is essential for any business to build a mutually beneficial relationship. Similarly if you lack certain skills, you can make up for it by collaborating with your fellow workers. The ability to collaborate and work in a team is fundamental, especially in international business, collaborating with team members from other cultures. It requires humility, diplomacy, credit sharing, listening ear, respect for others’ views and opinions.


    • Social & Emotional Intelligence: Strong social and emotional intelligence influences every aspect of business interaction. This becomes crucial in international business. Emotionally intelligent people respond better in stressful business situations, they are flexible to changes, work well in teams and have strong sense of empathy.


    • Interpersonal Influence: The ability to influence others is fundamental to any business. It is highly desirable when we negotiate with our stakeholders. It’s the ability to be assertive, without being aggressive. It is a skill that will help in pitching for new business, negotiating deals, and motivating diverse teams.

    It’s now been more than 30 years of opening up of Indian Economy and Global companies have ventured into every sector from manufacturing, retailing, IT to Banking and Insurance. This calls for hiring of Indians to fit into different roles. This presents wonderful opportunities for professionals having in-depth knowledge of Business Administration with global orientation.

    Earning the right degree is a must for a career in a competitive field such as international business. We at IIMR, offers a University affiliated three years Bachelor’s Degree in Foreign Trade, which instills the required hybrid skills to be successful in the international business field.

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