Takeaways from Mike Kelly on Navigating the Global Regulatory Market

CGB Insights
2 min readSep 14, 2022


Last Wednesday, September 7, McCombs International Business alumni Mike Kelly spoke to over 120 participants from The University of Texas about the different aspects of what it’s like working for a company that does business with varying agents from around the world.

Graduating in 1985 with a degree in International Business from the McCombs Business School, Mike Kelly has held prominent positions in various multinational corporations. Currently working for SeekOps as the Director of Business Development in the Americas, Mike Kelly had great advice in CGB’s event “Navigating the Global Regulatory Markets” for students interested in monitoring and measuring different levels of emissions produced by businesses in their day-to-day operations, and for anyone interested in starting a career in today’s global economy:

Foreign Language and Intercultural Learning:

  • In today’s market, where business is not conducted in just one tongue, mastering a foreign language is an asset, especially when the language is critical in the region. For example, Mike Kelly mainly works in the Americas. Hence, he highlighted how knowing Spanish and Portuguese allowed him to succeed when conducting business for SeekOps in the region.
  • Understanding different cultural customs and norms can be the defining factor in a business negotiation. Every country is unique, and so are the customs that are deemed acceptable. Therefore, it pays to learn what behaviors are permissible when conducting business in a foreign country. What may seem ordinary in the United States often is not shared and can even be insulting in other regions.

Technical Skills:

  • A good mastery of accounting principles is critical to succeeding in business. Mike Kelly emphasized that at the end of the day, every business’ end goal is to maximize profits. Hence, understanding profits and losses within a company are crucial, whether when working for a company that is only active domestically or for one that does business globally.
  • As for more international business-specific technical skills, excelling in logistic maximization strategies, understanding foreign exchange rates, and comprehending what the supply chain encompasses are critical. International law and trade are other paramount topics in which one should have a suitable background. In the end, these skills are applied daily when working for a transnational corporation and comprehending them can give one a comparative advantage as an employee.

You can watch the talk here:

Written by Julian Gonzalez, Intern at the Center for Global Business