Doing Business in Japan Essay

854 Words Sep 24th, 2008 4 Pages
Doing Business in Japan
1. Concept of “nemawashi”.
In order to do successful business in Japan, it is very important to understand the heart of the Japanese decision-making process, known as “nemawashi”. Nemawashi was originally a gardening term, which roughly translates as “to dig around the root of a tree a year or two before transplanting it”. In the terms of business, “nemawashi” is the organized and efficient consensus building procedure by which the approval of a proposed idea or project is sought from every person in a major organizational position. Today, this term is widely used in Japan, particularly in the business sector, trying to avoid discrepancies and gain an agreement from everyone in advance, along with keeping
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It also gives a great opportunity to use in full measure the knowledge and attainments of all the employees to achieve the set goal. It seems that even a lack of rapid responses to a critical situation can be considered as an advantage due to the fact that Japanese see a lack of immediate reaction as a benefit. This peculiar feature of Japanese psychology was shaped by the “Wu Wei” principle formulated by the ancient Chinese philosopher Lao Ji: “By doing nothing you will do the greatest good” (Arin, 2005). This tactic is utilized by Japanese businessmen in conducting business abroad. On the other hand, disadvantages of that system include its protracted length of arriving at a conclusion and a lack of responsible people to make a wise decision.
2. Ways of decreasing intercultural communication apprehension.

Japan is an attractive country to do business with. However, it is not so easy to make a Japanese company as one’s partner due to the drastic differences in the ways of approaching business in the West and the East. That is why an understanding of “nemawashi” as a unique strategy inherent in Japanese companies can increase the chances of successful negotiation with them. The result of the survey provides evidence that educating oneself on examples from previous Japanese-American negotiations and reading related literature significantly improves the success of business negotiations. The analysis of the factors responsible for the

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