The Market Development Director (MDD) is responsible for promoting the state’s economic growth by helping companies increase the export of Wisconsin products and services. The MDD will be an expert for his/her geographic portfolio area. This position will develop and implement initiatives for companies entering or expanding to new or existing markets. Also, develop and manage the Global Network of Wisconsin International Trade Representatives in the high volume and high growth potential markets matching Wisconsin industry sectors, in the assigned geographic portfolio area.
The Market Development Manager will spend a majority of his/her time on these activities:
• Support an increase in Wisconsin exports.
o Counsel Wisconsin businesses on exporting into Asia with a focus on China, documentation, logistics, payment methods and compliance.
o Propose, lead and coordinate WEDC's participation in foreign trade events and in-country market development activities.
o Field requests from Wisconsin businesses on country specific import requirements and regulations.
o Recruit businesses to participate in export related training, services and missions.
• Educate Wisconsin companies new to export.
o Respond to requests from Wisconsin businesses on how to get started in exporting.
o Leverage, expand, and promote export assistance resources located within Wisconsin.
o Write reports, articles and other marketing material to promote exporting.
o Serve as a trainer on topics related to exporting.
• Provide on-going updates to Wisconsin businesses, government leaders and WEDC leadership on foreign trade issues within their geographic responsibility.
o Mentor local/regional economic development organizations on trade and exporting.
o Research and analyze trade policies and data to provide technical advice.
o Anticipate, research and report on future changes in import/export laws, trade agreements, issues and opportunities for portfolio responsibility area, and ensure it is built into WEDC's planning.
• Collaborate and coordinate with external and internal customers.
o Identify foreign direct investment (FDI) opportunities and hand-off to international business attraction team.
o Maintain contact and an ongoing relationship with the trade commissions of Asia with a heavy focus on China.
o Represent WEDC in related organizations/partnerships.
• Develop an export strategy and an implementation plan for his/her assigned portfolio area.
o Participate in annual division planning process and ensure that one’s portfolio strategy is coordinated with the divisional and state level strategies.
o Identify and justify recommended strategy revisions when required.
o Analyze trade potential for new and existing international markets and build and expand the international network to increase Wisconsin's exposure in priority markets.
• International, national, and state-wide travel will occur on a frequent basis, more than 30% of the time. Travel is anticipated to include day and overnight travel.
• This position is eligible for reimbursement according to the Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) program. This position requires the employee to provide a mobile device that allows for phone, text, and email access.
Education and Experience:
• Bachelor’s degree in Business, Management, Economics or any equivalent combination of education, experience and training that provides the required knowledge and skills.
• Minimum of five years of experience related to exporting and international business in the areas of business development, export operations, investment, sales, marketing, promotion, or in a state, US federal or overseas trade promotion agency.
• Minimum of five years experience in exporting, international sales and strategic international business development.
Skills and Talents:
• Knowledge Areas
o Extensive knowledge of exporting, export regulations and practices and trade policy.
o Considerable knowledge of export development strategies including the ability to identify target markets, develop market entry strategies and identify investment opportunities in the state.
o Deep knowledge of economics and business management principles and practices.
o International sales
• Technical Skill Areas
o Demonstrated strong project management experience in a leadership role.
o Superior research and analysis skills: proven ability to rapidly compile, analyze and leverage highly varied data to optimize current business and to identify new opportunities.
o Strong written and verbal communication skills to deal effectively with C-Level and senior executives as well as diverse groups of customers internal and external to the organization.
o Experience in strategic planning.
• Soft Skill Areas
o Ability to develop relationships with industry, government officials, and other state agency staff.
o Ability to work under pressure with competing demands and varied priorities.
o Demonstrated intercultural fluency and sensitivity through experience in extended travel to, doing business with, and/or living outside the US.
o Demonstrated ability to partner and influence at all levels in the business and to be viewed as a credible, valuable source of information and integral part of management team.
• Bilingual ability is highly preferred. French, Italian or Japanese a plus.