We live in what many call the VUCA world - volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous. Naturally professionals from all areas need to work skills that go beyond the technical and sector-specific part in which they work. With Comex professionals it would be no different.
Nowadays, a thorough understanding of the procedures related to legislation, rules and international agreements is the basic, they are not differential. For the Foreign Trade professional to gain prominence, he needs to go further.
But if you are a manager or an HR professional, you also need to know what to look for in a Comex professional.
In this post, we will share what skills are needed to excel in Foreign Trade. Spoiler: all of them are important, but the last skill is the one that Foreign Trade companies need most.
According to a survey released by Linkedin, during quarantine, the ability to communicate is the most sought after by employers.
The remote work came to stay and with the communication tools, many processes that were previously carried out in person in Foreign Trade, started to be carried out virtually.
You need to know how to communicate in presentations and meetings in front of a Webcam, for example.
Besides knowing how to use the various tools to communicate effectively with the team, we now need to understand how to use the same tools to attract more customers, report processes and do research.
2. TEAM SPIRIT AND LEADERSHIP
When a job requires the resolution of different variables and processes with a lot of detail - as is the case of import and export, it is essential to know how to work in a team and have a leadership spirit.
An import and export process can take much longer if the team and its professionals are not aligned or failures occur that should have been avoided if someone had taken the reins of the situation. Result: greater wear and tear among employees, lack of engagement and mistrust, and great chances of losing money and customers.
It is essential that the Foreign Trade professional knows the importance of his work and of each member of the team. Everyone needs to be willing to talk and listen, using the agile process tools to organize the steps, whether remote or in person.
3. EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE
To be able to communicate and have team spirit, it is important to have emotional intelligence. Ability that many seek after going through so many difficulties and uncertainties because of the pandemic.
Emotional intelligence is the ability to relate to your own emotions and those of others. It is the ability to receive constructive criticism and not take it personally, for example.
The Foreign Trade market involves great responsibilities and knowing how to deal with pressure, without it interfering with performance, is extremely necessary.
4. NEGOTIATION AND PERSUASION.
Negotiating with suppliers and customers is normal routine for a foreign trade professional.
Therefore, knowing how to negotiate and persuade are skills that the foreign trade professional needs to work. To do so, you need to have a lot of mastery of what you are doing and know how to communicate in the right way - once again the first skill is present.
As approached at the beginning of this post, we live in the VUCA world - volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous, that's why creativity has left the environment of advertising agencies and startups, to invade all segments - such as Foreign Trade.
In order to know how to solve the countless problems that are increasingly constant and unexpected, the Comex professional needs to know how to innovate, that is, to have the ability to do what everyone else already does, in a completely different way.
All foreign trade companies are looking for innovative professionals, with out of the box thinking and willingness to create logistical and marketing solutions.
6. TECHNOLOGICAL KNOWLEDGE/DATA ANALYSIS
A Comex professional who has the first 5 skills is already ahead of many people, but if he has technological knowledge and knows how to analyze data and take innovative solutions through them, he will surely be in great demand
The Foreign Trade sector has an increasing demand to create technological solutions for its processes, which will solve internal problems of the organization and customers.