May 31, 2018
Following the previous blog “10 Tips for Entertaining Business Clients Preparation”, this time we will introduce five tips of the day of business entertainment and following up.
【On the day of business entertainment】
Show respect to key persons
Ask the director of Company A for the toast and ask the director of Company B for the closing remarks.(It is better to check in advance whether they can accept these greetings. )
Stay sharp even if you drink
Entertainment is a part of business. Even if client says “Le’ts loosen up and enjoy!”,you must behave responsibly.If you are in a position to invite, please always look after clients carefully if they are enjoying it.
Check the way of payment with your boss in advance whether your company will pay all or a split bill.If you need to pay, payment will be made before your client notice.
Ask your client for second party
If you invite your client for business entertainment, just in case, prepare the second party in advance.The location of the second party will be close to the venue of the first party.
Express your thanks to client within the next morning.
Tell your client? a feeling of thankfulness as quickly as possible (The best time is the next morning ).The most polite way is a letter, however, recently telephone is mainstream.
In Japan, “business entertainment” is done to get to know each other. Business entertainment has been stopped as frequently as before so as not to adhere to the outside of the company, but there is still a drinking party like a social gathering. Therefore, I will introduce 10 points of business entertainment so as not to fail in the entertainment scene.
Do not judge by yourself if you are invited.
Some companies prohibit to invite or to be invited to the business entertainment. Make sure consulting with your boss before you reply. And, if you go, decide who will go as well.
Tell your clients who you will go with (especially your boss) in advance.
Let your clients know like “I will go by three members of ○○ of the department manager, □□ of section chief, and myself” in advance.
Generally we will ensure that the titles of both participants are balanced.
(In the position of inviting) Be careful not to forget to invite a key person.
When inviting to entertainment, there must be a purpose for it. And, roughly the purpose of business entertainment should be strengthening relationship with a key person. If you can not directly invite the person you want to meet, ask the other person of the company whether the key person can join the entertainment.
(In the position of inviting) Make sure what is Not Good
Make sure to ask clients about their allergies or NG foods.
(In the position of inviting) Choose a suitable restaurant
For business entertainment, you choose a restaurant with a private dining room to have conversations comfortably. There may be a noisy atmosphere in a cheap chain type Izakaya. If you do not know a good restaurant, ask your seniors and bosses for recommendations.
If you are working in Japan, you will often go to karaoke in a second party etc.
If you sing at karaoke and you can enjoy it with the Japanese, you can enjoy deepening relationship with your business partners.
The difficult thing for foreigners will be choosing a song that will be appreciated by Japanese people.
So, I will teach you the site introducing the ranking of Japanese songs by age.
1950’s Ranking: http://nendai-ryuukou.com/1950/song.html
1960’s Ranking: http://nendai-ryuukou.com/1960/song.html
1970’s Ranking: http://nendai-ryuukou.com/1970/song.html
1980’s Ranking: http://nendai-ryuukou.com/1980/song.html
1990’s Ranking: http://nendai-ryuukou.com/1990/song.html
2000’s Ranking: http://nendai-ryuukou.com/2000/song.html
* You can jump to the ranking of TOP 50 for each year from the link above.
* If you click on each song title, you will be connected to YouTube so you can listen to that song.
The point is “Choose songs that were popular when people going along were around 18 to 22”.
Because people listen to music the most during these ages.
For example, in my case, I often listened music from 1996 to 2000, so I checked the yearly ranking of 1996 to 2000. As a result, I found that each TOP 50 songs by year were very familiar.
If a person going to karaoke with you is around 50 years old, that person may often listens to songs of 1984 to 1988, so it is better to check these pages.
If you know old Japanese songs, it will be a good conversational material. Also, learning the song lyrics is useful for Japanese study.
May 15, 2018
Do you know a site called ZOZOTOWN or a company called Start Today that runs the site?
ZOZOTOWN is Japan’s largest fashion mail-order site where many popular brands gather, and it has enormous popularity from fashionable people and young generation.
Start Today’s market capitalization exceeds 1 trillion yen, which is slightly higher than the goods plan managing MUJI, and more than twice the largest department store, Mitsukoshi Isetan HD. (As of May 9, 2018)
This time, I picked up this company for the following three reasons.
Reason 1: Business model is cool
Normally EC is prone to price competition and profitability tends to be low.
However, the company’s current profit margin for the most recent three years exceeds 30%, 32.86%> 34.61%> 33.26%.
This is because the company’s main business is consignment sales, sales are not sales value of apparel products, but from commission from shops.
The consignment sales commission rate is said to be around 28%, which is higher than department store with real store, and inventory risk is also not included because ownership of inventory is in shop.
Although the apparel brand may have its own EC site, since only brand products are sold, users wanting to buy products of various brands will buy with ZOZOTOWN.
In addition, the company attracted attention by issuing new products called ZOZO suit.
This is a suit for accurately measuring the shape of the user, allowing users to order at their exact size and ZOZO gains the strongest tool for selling their own brand products It will be.
Reason 2: Management is cool
Mr. Maezawa, president, is also a luxury car collector such as Bugatti Veyron, Aston Martin, Ferrari Enzo etc.
When he caused an accident while driving Pagani Sonda, the other car was Maybach, so it became a hot topic to have caused accidents between super luxury cars.
He is also famous as a collector of arts and paintings and it became a hot topic that he bought a painting of Bathkia’s for 12.3 billion yen at an auction. (Before that, he also paid 6.24 billion yen at auction for an art work of Buskia.) There are not so many Japanese executives of listed companies that spend money in this way.
Reason 3: Personnel strategy is interesting
Working hours in Japan are generally from 9 to 5 o’clock, but ZOZOTOWN is 6 hours from 9 to 3 o’clock. Mr. Maesawa set a goal that “employees should give the best performance in the shortest time and use the remaining hours for fun.” Also, hiring highly qualified engineer at a maximum annual income of 100 million yen became a hot topic.
Since the company announced that it will strengthen overseas expansion by IR, the name of the company may be recognized in your country from now on.
For Japanese learners who are interested in presentations, IR, economic terms, etc., I think that it will be a good learning to see IR movies.
May 10, 2018
Since I gathered most of the information from the Internet, there are some information that I do not know whether it is true or not.
But, especially for those with dealings with companies on this list, I think that it will be a good story.
It is combined the Latin “SONUS” which became the origin of English “SONIC” meaning sound, and English “SONNY” meaning boy.
“Cannon” was the first camera prototype machine with the thought of creating the best camera in the world with the help of Kannon（Avalokiteshvara）.
It became English “Canon” because the pronunciation is similar and meaning of “standard”, “normality” are appropriate.
Kana notation of “a ripening rice plant”.
※ Now merged with Konica and KONICA MINOLTA
Nippon Electric Company, Limited “that is written in English (Nippon Electric Company, Limited).
From SERVICE GAME.
Founder’s surname “Ishibashi” in English, “Stone Bridge”, turning it over to “Bridge Stone”.
“D” and “E” of “DENIM” are reversed, turning “NIM” 180 degrees to convert it to “WIN” and convert it to richness of idea and to EDWIN.
It is enthusiastic to want to do free thought utilizing denim.
As another theory, there are many Japanese jeans makers in Okayama prefecture, there is also the theory that the company that is the Tokyo headquarters to compete with it, “Edo wins” = “Edo + WIN” originated.
From “glycogen” discovered from oyster broth.
Composite word of calcium + vitamin B series.
MOS FOOD SERVICES (Moss food service)
Mos Burger’s MOS is an acronym for Mountain, Ocean, Sun respectively.
“Mountain, the sea, the sun” mean “with noble and dignified like a mountain”, “with a deep wide mind like the sea” and “with a passion that does not burn out like the sun”.
FLY + MOSQUITO + KILLER
Face wash soap was initially called “face soap”. Face → Kao
The initials of Daigaku Honnyaku Center (University Translation Center).
Originally it was a company started from the translation industry and still uses its company name.
Chifure (Chihure cosmetics)
It is from the initials of the “National Regional Women’s Organization Liaison Council (Municipal Welfare Council.
It adds Service to products (Appeal, Unique, Tire, Oil, Battery, Accessory, Car audio) to be provided.
From the philosophy that AUTOBACS SEVEN’s official name SEVEN always keeps searching for the seventh product for customers.
It is a coined word that abbreviates the word “Security Communication”.
It puts the wave round and puts in the meaning that it wishes for safe fishing. It is a source full of kindness that prayed for fisherman’s safety.
STUDIO GHIBLI (Studio Ghibli)
GHIBLI (ghibli) means “hot air blowing in the Sahara desert”.
Hot feelings such as “Make a whirlwind in Japanese animation world!” are put in it.
How was it?
I was most surprised at the origin of DHC.
Do you know what kind of Japanese company is good for advancing your career?
The following are the two checkpoints:
(1) the company has developed international business
(2) the company has actively implemented the policy of employing foreign nationals
In contrast, it is suggested that you should avoid choosing “super localized companies” with the following conditions:
- business development in Japan only
- all employees of the company are Japanese
Below I will show you how to evaluate a company’s employment conditions in order to separate from super localized companies.
First of all, you have to check the company’s “domestic and overseas sales ratio” and “the proportion of foreign employees.” There are many relevant information and data for the public, you should be able to find both checkpoints easily. However, making judgement just according to this information is not enough. Because even if the company has a higher proportion of overseas sales, it may be commissioned by the overseas trading companies for the sales operations. With regard to the number of foreign workers, the company may include foreign employees who are living and working overseas, while there are no foreign nationals in Japan office.
So, I suggest you more checkpoints as follows:
(3) whether or not any foreign nationals are employed in the management layer
(4) whether or not any foreign nationals are employed in the HR team
If there are foreign nationals working in the management layer, it can be said that the company has a relatively high possibility of developing a global business, and has a higher number of English-speaking Japanese employees.
In addition, it is supposed that the HR team is usually the most localized department. If there are foreign nationals working in the HR team, it can be said that the company’s diversity is making good progress. Coupled with the perspective of foreign employees carrying out recruitment and training, it can be said that the company can provide foreign nationals a friendly working environment.
February 23, 2018
The column “Why isn’t LinkedIn used in Japan” is very popular.
・The company will think that you’re trying to change jobs if you register with LinkedIn. (In Japan, many people still assume lifetime employment.)
・Japanese people do not like to publicize their personal achievements and work experience. (Many people do not think in terms of their own achievements, but in terms of the achievements of their company or team.)
・In Japan, building personal relationships come first and this then leads to business opportunities. This is why people prefer Facebook.
・The following reason was also given: “Japanese people do not tend to draw a clear line between public and private matters. So they can talk about both their private lives and work on Facebook.” However, I think it’s more than just that.
The problem is the people who seek to employ workers.
Human resource departments, staffing agencies and corporate hiring managers also use LinkedIn, but except for large corporations, many hiring managers in Japan are also responsible for labor management, general affairs and administration, so they avoid direct recruiting because it’s a lot of extra work.
Not only that, there’s no real reason to put much effort into using LinkedIn, because even if hiring costs could be lowered by using it, companies don’t value it very much and it wouldn’t have much impact on salaries anyway.
February 9, 2018
Do you know, recently there is a company that is feared by many Japanese executives, saying “it is the end if that company enters to our industry?”
The company is called DMM, which has over 40 business lines in 15 countries as of March 2017, including online video business, DVD/CD rental business, game business, online English conversational school, online securities, solar power generation and MVNO business etc.
Although DMM may not be so well-known in foreign countries, we would like to introduce this Japanese company to you in this article.
It is a well-known fact that DMM is a company that has grown in the adult video business originally.
Let’s take a quick look at the company’s history. (A partial excerpt from Wikipedia)
Late 80s – Mr. Kameyama, now the president, opened a rental video shop
1998 – Started AV distribution site “DMM”
2003 – Entered the online DVD rental business
2006 – Launched TV commercials
2009 – Acquired a securities company and entered the FX business
2012 – Entered the solar power generation business
2013 – Started the online English conversational school
2014 – Started DMM mobile (MVNO)
2016 – Launched DMM. Africa.
2017 – Started DMM Academy (Two-year private school)
It is seen that DMM has spread its business extensively.
I think the following are the three key strengths of the company.
(1) Unlisted company
(3) Strategic power of Mr. Kameyama
Let’s look at this in more detail.
- Unlisted company
As DMM is an unlisted company, there is no need to publish the details of its business plan and the main source of revenue. DMM is ambitious aiming to the area that the company can win by analyzing various information including IR materials of other listed companies.
DMM has rich commercial profits in adult video business and has adopted a marketing strategy to invest liquidity in other business lines.
Especially its online English conversational school. The business began in 2013 that was later entered the industry, but DMM actively promote television advertising and offer low prices than others in the industry, contributing to its rapid growth. It is a strategy to raise prices after robbing market share.
- Strategic power of Mr. Kameyama
Mr. Kameyama led DMM to growth rapidly, but he seldom discloses his true face. However, he participates in many interviews and lectures, and his speech deeply impressed most of the audience. My impression on Mr. Kameyama can be concluded as one word of “Strategist”. As a manager, I also take off my hat to his strategic strength. He is thoroughly committed to only fight to win.
Business News Applications (NewsPicks) contains many conversations of Mr. Kameyama with other investors and celebrities, it is worth reading. It is easy to read as the contents are in a dialogue format, it would be useful for studying Japanese reading comprehension, studying strategy, and collecting information on related business.
Japanese general trading companies were said to be handling various business lines “from ramen to rocket”, because they have developed a wide variety of business all over the world. And now, various business lines of DMM, from adult video to education, have been growth steadily.
February 8, 2018
Today I will introduce a Japanese company that has a unique business model.
Do you know a company named RIZAP?
Rizap is a company that mainly manages a training gym.
If you are watching Japanese TV, you may remember it with its impressive CM.
The characteristics of RIZAP’s business are:
(1) 30 days Full repayment guarantee system
For any reason for 30 days from the start of the program, if you can not convince your achievement, they will refund you in full.
(2) High price
With the same features, RIZAP also operates golf schools and English conversation schools.
In RIZAP, the unit cost per lesson (50 minutes) is about 20,000 yen(*).
Golf lessons and English conversation lessons are roughly the same unit price. It is expensive, isn’t it?
(*)In the case of Body Make Standard Course 24 times, including membership fee
However, I think that this price setting was calculated precisely.
Because RIZAP can collect only serious people who want to take lessons even at high cost.
Also, those who can pay high cost, that is, people who can afford money tend not to complain so much.
Since Japanese tend not to complain too much, it may be a business model that succeeds only in Japan.
RIZAP’s performance seems to be growing steadily. Are there any similar business models in your country?
February 7, 2018
In Japan, the way of thinking about side jobs is changing.
It became a hot topic that Softbank, Japan ‘s major telecom giant, allowed their workers to do side jobs since November 2017.
■ Why did this movement happen?
There are five main reasons.
- As a Japanese employment system, seniority and lifetime employment are famous, but this system is changing.
- Anxiety about pension.
- Pursuit of diverse lifestyle
- With the spread of nets and tools, it became easier to have side jobs.
・Because it is a shortage of talented people, it also has the aim of recruiting and holding excellent talent by allowing various ways of working.
■ Main side jobs being done in Japan
- Asset management (eg real estate management)
- Utilization of idle assets (eg Airbnb, Anyca) in the sharing economy * UBER is not operating in Japan.
- Second-hand goods sale (example: Amazon Marketplace, Ebay, Mercari, Yahoo auction)
- Internet Talent business, Internet Advertisement business (eg YouTuber, blogger)
- Utilize skills and qualifications (eg translation, interpreting, weekend soccer referee, rafting guide)
■ Side jobs unique to Non-Japanese people
There are an increasing number of Japanese people who start business for overseas / foreigners around me. So, in addition to translation, interpreting, demand for overseas market research etc seems to grow further. Language teachers will be needed more.
Your knowledge and skills are required more and more, but we strongly recommend that you check your employment rules and laws.
There are still many companies banning side jobs under the employment regulations. Please pay attention to VISA, too. If you earn income for operations other than what is stipulated in VISA, it will be regarded as “unauthorized activity” and become illegal here in Japan.
There is no doubt that opportunities are increasing, so follow the rules and get your success.
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