“Company cultures are like country cultures. Never try to change one. Try, instead, to work with what you’ve got.” — Peter F. Drucker.


The Business world is full of multiple varieties of companies in each domain/industry – start-ups, consolidated corporations, or SMBs (small and medium-sized businesses).  Each got its functions, responsibilities, policies, and political and economic interests. 


To understand this better, let us look at the four major types of corporations that dominate the global trade markets these days.


International companies are importers and exporters, they have no investment outside of their home country, and their offices exist only in their home country (they cannot have subsidiaries in other countries.) Strategies to conduct the business are derived mainly from the primary and local domestic market, mostly influenced by the trading norms of the home country.

Example: Rolls Royce.


Multinational companies have locations or facilities in multiple countries, but each location functions on its way, essentially as an independent entity.

Generally, these companies maintain a centralized office in their home country, coordinating the other offices’ management.

Subsidiary offices can make decisions for conducting business in their local markets, but they must inform the head office before implementing the decisions.

The strategies to conduct the business are derived from both the domestic market and foreign markets.   

These companies are influenced by the home country’s and host countries’ trading norms.

Examples: Adidas, BMW, TATA group.


Global companies also have locations in multiple countries but don’t follow the official head office system.

They market their products using the same coordinated image/brand in all markets. Generally, one corporate office is responsible for global strategy, emphasizing volume, cost management, and efficiency. Standard products are sold without any flexibility in adapting to local consumers.

There is no change in branding or information about a global company, even if the country of operations changes.

Examples: McDonald’s, Toshiba.


Transnational companies are complex organizations operating substantial facilities, doing business in multiple countries, and not considering any country as official headquarters. One of the advantages is that they can maintain a greater degree of responsiveness to local markets. Offices in each country have decision-making powers and operate like head offices, and all the decisions are made to suit the operating zone. 

The strategies to conduct the business are derived mainly from the operating zone by understanding and adapting to each country’s local culture and demands.

They also can have a foreign direct investment (FDI.)

Examples: Nestle, Nokia.




📌Centralized: (of an activity or organization) controlled by a single authority or managed in one place.

📌Advantage: a condition or circumstance that puts one in a favorable or superior position. 

📌Disadvantage: an unfavorable circumstance or condition that reduces the chances of success or effectiveness.

📌Branding: promoting a particular product or company utilizing advertising and distinctive design.

📌Subsidiary: less important than but related or supplementary to something / a company controlled by a holding company.


📌To ask around: to ask many people the same question.

“I will ask around to find out who wants to go shopping together.”

📌To shop around: to compare prices for or quality of an item from different sources (similar to asking around)

“Our usual supplier is expensive. Let’s shop around for a better price on the cases.”


📌Ahead of the pack: to be more successful than the competition.

📌By the book: doing things according to the rules or the law.


Related Articles:

📌Acronyms in E-commerce https://www.englishpriority.com/acronyms-in-e-commerce/

📌Confusing words: Customer vs Client https://www.englishpriority.com/confusing-words-customer-vs-client/

📌Confusing words: Work vs Job https://www.englishpriority.com/confusing-words-work-vs-job/



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