Businesses usually include reputable business development jobs, such as business development executive, business development director and vice president of business development. Business development includes the sectors of sales, strategic initiatives, partnerships, market development, enterprise expansion and marketing, but we often confuse these sectors and make mistakes when we consider business development as a single job.

What is business development?

Business development can be summed up simply as ideas, initiatives and activities aimed at improving a project. Business development includes increasing revenues and growth in terms of project expansion and increasing profits, through strategic partnerships and prudent decisions.

But it is difficult to find a brief definition of business development. Let us now address its basic concept and its connection to the general objectives of the company.

Business development in various departments

Business development activities extend to different departments, such as sales and marketing, project management, product management and vendor management, and business development is concerned with the network of relationships, negotiations, partnerships and ways to reduce costs. These various activities and divisions serve business development goals.

For more explanation, let’s look at the following example: A company product / service is successful in a specific area, for example, the United States of America. The business development team explores the possibility of expansion, and after studying, researching and taking the necessary precautions, the team reaches the possibility of expanding the product / service market to include a new region like Brazil.

How does the goal of business development relate to different jobs and divisions?

The sales:

The sales team focuses on a specific market or a specific type of customer to achieve specific profits. In the previous example, the business development team studied the Brazilian market, and deduced the possibility of achieving profits of $ 1.5 billion in three years. To achieve this goal, the Sales division develops strategies targeting the customer base in the new market.


The Marketing department is concerned with the promotion and advertising of products with the aim of improving sales percentages for the targeted customers, as marketing plays a complementary role to reach the specified sales percentage. Business development initiatives can allocate a marketing budget, enabling high budgets to implement positive strategies, such as phone calls, personal visits, mobile shows, and free sample distribution, while limited budgets allow only traditional strategies, such as limited online advertising, social media, newspapers, and billboards.

Strategic initiatives and partnerships:

When a company wants to enter a new market, does it implement this alone and follow all the required formal procedures? Or is it better to enter into strategic partnerships with companies in the region? The business development team discusses with the financial and legal teams the advantages and disadvantages of available options, to select the appropriate option for the company.

Project management / planning:

Does the expansion process require an establishment in the new market, or will all products be made in the home country and exported to the new market? Does the second option require an additional facility in the home country? The business development team will decide these decisions according to their assessment of the time frame and costs, at which time the project management / implementation team will achieve the desired goal.

Product management:

Regulatory standards and market requirements vary from country to country, for example, a drug formulation accepted in India may not be accepted in the United Kingdom. Does the new market require its own modified version of the product, or does it require an entirely new version? The company strategy determines these requirements, and accordingly the Product Management and Manufacturing Division operate. The business development plan includes looking at legal approvals, studying costs and regulatory obligations.

Vendor management:

Will the new project need external sellers? Does shipping the product require a special transportation service? Will the company partner with a chain of stores located in the new market? How much will these obligations cost? The business development team is tasked with studying and solving these questions.

Negotiations, relations and pressure network:

Some business initiatives require personal skills. For example, the use of pressure grids is legal in some areas, and it may become necessary for a company to enter the market. Negotiation skills and relationships can be used to communicate with a third party, such as vendors, agencies, government authorities, and regulators. All of these initiatives are part of the business development team’s work.