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The Key To Doing Business In Japan

1370 words - 6 pages

The key to doing business in Japan is establishing strong relationships. According to Haru Yamada, a linguistics professor at the University of Westminster in London and the author of Different Games, Different Rules, “Present yourself as a trustworthy person who is sensitive to Japanese interests. Ask some non-sales related questions about their company. By shifting your focus from the product to the relationship, you will consider it the most interesting part of doing business and don’t consider it an effort at all. It’s part of figuring out who you’re dealing with, and how familiar with the West you counterpart is. Japanese people are deeply proud of traveling. Get them to tell you about ...view middle of the document...

Also, when first meeting someone, you must never shake their hands. It is seen as uncomfortable and can lead into never wanting to meet again. When doing negotiations, the Japanese do not like to use the word no. They will simply respond with yes but they actually mean no. The negotiations normally begin with middle managers and one should not try and start a negotiation with a senior executive. A questionnaire was developed for identifying various aspects of practices, procedures, and outcomes pertaining to the United States and Japans business negotiations. This study showed that 67% of Japanese like to avoid direct confrontation of issues, 49% of Japanese take a longer time to make major decisions, 37% of Japanese negotiators seemed to be more concerned with establishing long-term associations, 33% of Americans are more flexible, and 32% of the Japanese place heavy emphasis on “face saving”. When transitioning from being a full-time student to going into the workforce, companies provide them with training in etiquette and politeness as part of employee orientation. Businesses often teach their employees to speak in ways of tenei, which means politeness. They then teach them how to speak in yasashii, which means to speak kindly or to show consideration. Finally, the course teaches them to speak in terms of kirei, which means beautiful. The Japanese teach the new employees entering the workforce these things because they often lack the skill of appropriately using these certain words. This training course provides the employees on how to present themselves ranging from word choice, dress, and movement. In order to show respect, one must bow to the customer. Yet bowing at the correct angle, for the right amount of seconds, with the correct placement of the limbs displays the presentation of the person as well as the company. The Japanese are actually very impressed when a foreigner takes the initiative to bow upon introduction. Business is mainly handled by men and there are few high executives that are women. Since the United States is a culture where women are just as equal as men in the business setting we are accustomed to high women executives. Yet when the Japanese men are doing business with women executives from the United States, they find it out of the ordinary. They are treated very well, though, because the Japanese know that women in western culture hold high positions. Dining with Japanese businessmen is very important. The Japanese like to see how a person is outside of the firm and after hours. As mentioned before, they do not like the word no, so if offered a drink you must take it. Never pour your own drink always allow the other person to pour it for you and vice versa. You must wait for the executive or most important person to begin eating before you do. Japan is a unitary state which means that it is governed as one single division in which the central government is supreme and any sub-national units only practice powers...

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