Building your team

insider insights for successful u.s. expansion

By Beverley Ferrara, European Representative

headshot of Beverly FerraraExpanding into the US is an exciting opportunity for many of our international members, but tapping into the world’s largest economy comes with its fair share of challenges – not least building a team that can drive business growth. Although the US has a diverse and skilled talent pool, there’s a lot to consider from a recruitment perspective from getting to grips with employment laws and tax regulations to benefit packages and corporate culture.

For this blog, I spoke with talent experts from the US, UK, and Europe, and here they share their advice, tips, and insights on strategic hiring practices for companies considering a push into the US.

Alex Mason, Head of International at Jackson Hogg in the UK, emphasizes the importance of being flexible and open to advice: “When expanding your business into a huge market like the US, people can get burnt out which is detrimental to business performance. A good structure is crucial to ensure business performance is the best it can be. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, as overworking can lead to missed opportunities. Leverage the expertise of your board members and peers within the industry to gain valuable insights and guidance.

Before you start hiring, it’s key you think hard about requirements. Consider your existing team’s perspectives to understand why they joined your company, which can help in identifying the right candidates. Psychometric testing can also provide a deeper understanding of potential hires, ensuring they fit well within your team.

Think of consultants not just as CV generators, but as sources of comprehensive knowledge to enhance your recruitment process and overall strategy – particularly important in a new market. Lastly, focus on strong employer branding and clearly define your hiring process to attract top talent and ensure a smooth recruitment experience.”

Contact Alex Mason at Jackson Hogg: Email:
Phone: +44 123 456 7890 | Website:

Amanda Daering, CEO & Founder at Newance, a tech talent consultancy building teams for early-stage start-ups across the US, suggests a forward-thinking approach: “When determining which role to hire for, it’s essential to evaluate the potential return on investment for your business, focusing on positions that will provide the most significant payback. Start by visually mapping out your company’s strengths to see where you are already thriving, and then align these strengths with market dynamics and business goals.

Finding the right fit goes beyond just looking for a good candidate; it’s crucial to identify someone who will be a great team player and excel in their role. Consider the time and costs involved in the hiring process, as the wrong hire or missed opportunities can be costly. Leveraging consultants can help mitigate these risks and streamline your recruitment process, ensuring you build a strong and effective team.”

Contact Amanda Daering at Newance: Email:
Phone: +1 (414) 885-4519 | Website:

Helle Fjord, Business Development for Slater Consult, a Danish/international recruitment firm focusing on the renewables industry, highlights the value of branding: “Many of the European companies we partner with come from markets where certain industries and technologies are larger and more advanced than in the US (e.g. wind, water, biogas, Power-to-X). The companies have a brand name and enjoy great respect for their accomplishments in the Nordic Region as well as in Europe. However, when they start their journey into North America, they are hardly or not at all known on the market.

Our entry point to a strong partnership with our clients is in general to spend a considerable amount of time to get to know their DNA in depth and understand their strategy, mission, company and team culture as well as team structure, management style and organizational set-up. We support them in building a “go getter” attitude alongside with maturing a humbleness for their self-understanding on the journey into a new territory. Only by knowing our clients’ plan and vision in depth, can we become qualified branding ambassadors and speak the language that attracts the most qualified candidates for the jobs.

Employer branding in an enormous market of 50 diverse states is one of the most important competences to learn to master when building a business in America. Jumping ship to a new and foreign company and perhaps sidestepping into a new industry can be a scary move for candidates in the American workforce. But if you have your strategy and plan in place you’re off to a good start.

Contact Helle Fjord at Slater Consult: Email:
Phone: +1 720 618-1217| Website:

The Water Council regularly convenes topic experts to help guide companies expanding into the United States.

Our next Overseas Member meeting is July 9, when Helle Fjord and Amanda Dearing will discuss creative team building and the pros and cons of hiring locally versus out-of-country sales. We’ll also explore best practices for independent recruitment and highlight key cultural differences in hiring processes, salary expectations and vacation norms, essential for understanding the differences between US and European business practices.

Please get in touch if you’re interested in attending.