Successfully Managing a Global Medtech Business Amidst International Travel Challenges.

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Date: Sept-Oct 2021
From: Medical Product Outsourcing(Vol. 19, Issue 7)
Publisher: Rodman Publishing
Document Type: Article
Length: 1,313 words
Lexile Measure: 1320L

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When the pandemic hit last year, there was never a doubt that international travel would be difficult for quite some time. But the vaccines promised a hopeful return to global treks (on an as-needed basis, of course).

Now, two-thirds of the year is gone and it's still challenging to travel internationally. While some countries--mostly in Europe--are allowing cross-border journeys to vaccinated travelers, many Asian countries are banning entry to non-nationals, even those who have been inoculated. Furthermore, it's become extremely problematic for foreigners (including business folks) to enter the United States.

Such stringent travel restrictions have made it difficult for C-Suite executives to manage a global medical technology business when they cannot visit their worldwide operations/teams. Similarly, it is easy for international employees who cannot travel to America for business meetings or conferences to feel alienated from the team. New digital tools like Zoom, Google Meet, and Teams are helping global companies keep the lines of communication open, but tools alone can't manage operations. Thus, C-Suite executives must find other, more creative ways to ensure their worldwide corporate objectives are staying on track.

It is imperative for management teams to conduct regular "functional check-ups" on all operational activities that are impacted globally. This may seem obvious but busy business leaders can easily become preoccupied with the daily "alligators" that may be affecting their ability to perform. Most companies presumably are continuing to observe their management metrics to ensure their business is at a high level and tracking to their KPIs (key performance indicators); these organizations, however, must take their observations to the next level to properly manage the organizational departments impacted by the lack of direct interaction with their commanders around the world.

The functional areas that may be impacted include sales, marketing, manufacturing, supply chain, quality and regulatory, and R&D. Some thoughts on how to perform "functional check-ups" in these organizational areas follow.

Sales: Call customers in various regions of the world. Before COVID-19, one of the...

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