Export Management Specializations

Strategy and Operations need different Profiles

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Planning Bestpractice Internationalisation SME Export Made in Italy Internationalisation tools

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The complex challenge of internationalization requires support from the increasingly specialized and at the same time integrated consultancy sector for a Small and Medium-sized Enterprise.

The planning and execution phases
require different professional skills

In particular, it seems appropriate to distinguish the following types of intervention:

  • support to the definition of the strategy; in this field, methodological skills and information that can allow a decision making process as much as possible shared within the user enterprise tend to be rewarded; the output of this first type of intervention is the development of a "data-driven" International Business Plan;
  • support to the implementation of the strategy: in this field they tend to reward knowledge and experience innate to the sector and the target market, which can make the implementation of the International Business Plan particularly effective.
Export Management's Profiles

The set of competences of the first type can be codified as Strategic Export Executive; the set of competences of the second type can be classified, instead, as Operational Export Executive.

This is the approach that is taking shape within the initiative Expert Manager Working Group for Export/Import and Internationalization Processes. This initiative, promoted by UNI - Italian Standards Body - is aimed at the coding of certified professional profiles of export management able to:

  • stimulate a market orientation of services for internationalization in a perspective of increasing specialization and, therefore, efficiency in terms of offer;
  • promote better communication with user SMEs, so that the offer systems relating to the two professional profiles can be distinguished and better selected.

Giuseppe Vargiu


is an internationalization consultant. He is president of the UNIEXPORTMANAGER association, which brings together operators, professionals and experts who work independently in export management. Since 2019, he has been a member of the ExportPlanning Committee.