Japanese for a Brighter Future
Planning a meeting with any international or foreign subjects can be daunting if one does not get accustomed to the culture of the other group first. My agenda before meeting with the Japanese is to:
First of all register the services of an interpreter so as to be fully involved in the discussion though it would be a good sign to learn some Japanese; this will show that I have an interest in the culture. I also have to be careful with my choice of topics in conversation. Some topics are taboo like the world War 11 and could ruin the entire meeting.
To verify who will attend and how long the meeting will take is important because Japanese value collectivism and thus ...view middle of the document...
Finding out who is the eldest or senior man could earn me some trust due to the fact that the Japanese want me to address my remarks to the senior man.
The debating style is another important factor. The Japanese will do business with me only if they trust me; appearance counts as well. Showing respect and being courteous is vital to the Japanese culture. Direct disagreement or putting them in a corner is a sign of rudeness to their culture.
I should also understand the level of flexibility during negotiations, they will stick to their decision and their tough and good negotiators however, and when treated with respect they are willing to modify their position. Also, I should understand that if they do not agree, I will not get any direct feedback at that time.
Considering their priorities could facilitate me in regards to which angle to open up the meeting, for example. The Japanese concentrate on harmonizing general principles prior to examining details. Though bringing up subjects that relate with their social culture like arts could be a good idea, that is trying to relate with them would be to my advantage.
Consideration of the cultural gap between my group and the Japanese could save both groups embarrassments. My group should be cautious with wording because the Japanese tend to take everything literally. In addition humorous remarks should be kept at a minimum thus you risk offending them since they do not understand the humor.
Lewis, R.D. (2006). When cultures collide: Leading across cultures (3rd ed). Nicholas Brealey Publishing: Boston, MA.