Business balloons in textiles from Portugal to a French Company via H.Kong.
About the multinational companies - multinational by terms of having people from different nationalities in its ranks - a contractor, pretending to operate in far away countries, other then their own or the one where they are installed.
These supposed managers, C.E.O.'s as they may call themselves, should undergo some kind of International Certification Exam in order to access their capacities to develop business introductions, conversations and finally business executions in those far away countries.
Different geographical latitudes and longitudes carry an immensely rich and various modus-operandi, sometimes unknown to the local agents in its extension.
When one of this companies, reaches an agreement with an international Agent, a Consultant of the market pretended, the company has to rely on the advise and experience of this agent.
When the company undergoes a run-over of this persons local "connaissance" and acts against its own interest by means of 'reducing' and counter-naturally forcing the agent to act against his advise, experience and expertise, there is only one result in the making.....
The failure of the company's methods takes alongside the efforts of their chosen Agent/Consultant, endangering several levels of interest in the business, other partners.
At the end, presented with this tremendous failure, of its sole responsibility, the contractor, (they like to think they are a company) takes an over-expensive and suicidal turn by choosing to blame it all on the agent/consultant and criminally settles for not paying for the expenses involved.
When the Agent asks for samples to give to producers in order to make a complete and accurate calculation of the quotation for those styles and the Contractor says: what for?? the other countries producers do not need samples, they make price by looking at a (2x2cm bad)photograph......."
When you are told to "value" and "rate" your long time established producers, with an inquire that takes away from them for starters some 15points out of 100, for the reason that they have not been investigated for child labor abuse. In Portugal for all that matters that is not acceptable and does not exist, but, the fact you can not reply as there are no correct answer reduces your producers chances by so many points in relation to other competitors in places like Romania, Bulgary, China, India, Pakistan ..........
When one Agent/Consultant speaks face-to-face via Skype with one the the supposed CEO and this agrees the sub-contracted person is to visit some producers in order to finalize the projects in hand, and later on says: " yes I agreed but you failed to budget it, so I don't pay...."
There was nothing to budget, the distances are verifiable via Google, and the results have appeared after the visit......... then again the CEO says: "I am not sure you went there only to take care of our business.......so I don't pay....!"
I mentioned before that there were 'several levels of interest, other partners', this is very true, and I consider that aside the Contractor and the Contracted Agent, there walk side-by-side several Industrial Producers, and the number one interested which is the Client.
When this Client is not one, but "THE" absolute most important player in what concerns Luxury fashion items, the leftovers of this "tremendously bad experience" prove to be very damaging at first to this brand, or brands in relation to the Producers involved in the Project, as they will account for the so special brand after all is not so special when it is represented by such a Contractor....
On the contractor side, it blames the Agent when reporting to the Brand.
On the Agent side, he has an immediate pecuniary loss for having trusted the Contractor in first place, but at the end he risks to have his own professional confidence and reputation balanced next to his business connections, for having served and defended such a Contractor that lead to failure next to the final Client. !
I leave here the advise that any Agent or Consultant when accepting to work for foreign Contractors, specially if they come from the far-East and are directed by western people "that I will call from now on 'the dragons' " and they try to overrun your experience forcing you to work and develop your business in a 'Call-Center way' and using questionnaires to value and choose an industrial producer that you know is the suitable for the project but they deny by telling you they are not, to STOP IMMEDIATELY the business relation.
In the end it will prove more profitable to you, I know well by experience.
Just because the Contractor hold a site on the internet, full of dragons in several languages, it does not mean they are a reliable company, don't let yourself be fooled by this type of showoff.
In case it happens, do as I did, prepare a full dossier with all relevant communication and show it to all companies involved, to the client, to all professional organization,s industry associations of your area, and to an international consultancy mercantile agency such as Dun & Bradstreet, they have proved very reliable in the past in taking care of this type of problems and at least they spread around the world the bad information concerning the Contractor. That sometimes is more valuable than to collect the money itself......
Enjoy your businesses, well, and don't forget:
When you get a Consultant or Agent, rely on him for the good development of your business, or, don't get one !