Studying international business abroad provides an excellent opportunity to experience world travel and develop people skills that are essential to working in the field of international business. Whether you choose to focus on economics, marketing, or finance while studying international business abroad, be prepared to learn a system different from your own in both theory and practice. Every country conducts business a little different, by studying abroad you will learn how to adapt your business model and mind set to any country and culture.
Why Study International Business Abroad
When studying international business abroad, you will develop observational skills that will greatly improve your sensitivity to different cultures and people. People skills are essential to a successful career in international business, and by studying abroad you will learn the practice of observing and adapting to cultural customs different from your own.
It’s always important to abide by the local customs when conducting business in a foreign country instead of following a model associated within your country. This will establish a personal relationship with your business partners that is crucial to successful business and will demonstrate your understanding and appreciation for their culture. Through travelling and studying different international business models, you will develop an adaptability to cultures that will reflect positively on your personal identity and ability to interact cross-culturally.
No matter where you decide to study international business abroad, you are sure to gain beneficial academic and professional experience. There are business programs located all over the world that are open to international students, the following are a few specific countries that are worth noting however.
England is often grouped together with North America to form “the western world,” which often mistakenly implies that the cultures are the same. While the U.S. and England share very similar customs relative to the rest of the world, there are many subtle differences between the cultures that are important to note when considering studying international business in England. One major difference between the cultures is the concentration of people to an area. England’s population is roughly one fifth of the American population with only one fifteenth of the square mileage. This creates for very thriving cities in England with many business jobs and internship opportunities.
The population of London specifically has been exponentially growing as a result of immigration which has transformed the identity of the nation as a whole into a global center of culture. The range of diversity allows international business students the opportunity to learn the business customs and social aspects of a variety of nations and cultures, making England a perfect location to study international business abroad.
If you are looking to completely submerge yourself into a culture different from your own, there are no shortage of opportunities to study international business in China. As a leading nation looking to progress in the modern world, studying business in China will expose students to the customs and business practices of Chinese culture as well as one of the more important languages in the business world. In addition to taking fundamental courses in your focus area, you will slowly pick up on the cultural etiquette of China, such as the importance of receiving a business card with two hands. Though some customs may seem difficult to adjust to at first, overtime the experiences will become keys to good personal and business relationships in the future.
Argentina is a major participant in the world of international business, and also holds cultural practices that are unique to the rest of the world. Students studying international business in Argentina will have access to a wide variety of classes in environments that will also teach them the ways of Argentine culture and people. Argentinians stress the importance of building close personal relationships with their business partners, so it is common to ask about each others families in business meetings and even to kiss one another on the cheek as a greeting. This informal nature is important for students studying international business to experience, as it can likely aid in successful business interactions under the same format in the future. Spanish is not a requirement to study abroad in Argentina, but language study is often paired with business classes, adding to the benefit of programs.
Courses & Programs
The types of international business courses offered abroad are typical consist of subjects such as economics, business management, and finance, but the way in which courses are taught will vary greatly between locations. Studying abroad will intro students to unique cultural features that will help them understand a wider range of audiences and clients, or at least be more open and aware of different cultural practices.
While some international business study abroad programs will focus on regular classroom lectures, others will include travel throughout the country, and some will even involve travel across an entire continent.
Most students who study international business abroad will focus strongly on cultural studies and cultural integration. As a fast and ever growing field, international business can at times break the barriers of cultural differences. By studying international business abroad, you will have the chance to study and witness globalization first hand, and learn about its effects on modern business.
It is very easy to find business courses taught in English in almost any given country, if that is what you prefer. But if you are looking to develop your language skills, you will also have the opportunity to take courses in the local language in many locations. It can also be beneficial to take a communications or linguistics class to better understand the cultural specifics of communication in that country.
Courses in international business are available abroad year-round. Experience is typically not required to study international business abroad, but some programs may ask for a year or two of relevant university course work.
By studying international business abroad, you will being yourself one step closer to the world of international relations and cross-cultural interactions. Through learning business concepts and practices used in a new culture, you will sharpen your ability to be attune to different settings. These skills will come in handy when conducting business in any country you have never been to, which is sure to happen when you begin working in the field of international business.
Having practiced your ability to observe and adjust to different cultures, you will know what countries you must be polite and formal in, rather than casual and personable, or which cultures admire negotiation and which ones do not. You will be able to attribute your learned ability to recognize cultural differences to your experiences traveling and studying abroad, so the more cultures you experience the better.
Strong travel experiences and a good academic record are going to stand out to any potential employer or client in the business world as well, so begin your extensive and promising travel resume today by studying international business abroad.