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2023 New Year’s Greetings from Japan Intercultural Consulting

As countries around the globe have begun to learn to “live with” the coronavirus and Japan re-opened to the world, our team at Japan Intercultural Consulting has been busy conducting teambuildings. As teams reconnect with colleagues from afar and even ones nearby who they have only seen on Zoom, a facilitated session can help to deepen communication and address barriers to collaboration.

We are also doing more training sessions in-person, although it’s great having the option to use Zoom for far-flung groups, shorter sessions and coaching.

As more people are traveling to Japan, we are also seeing renewed demand for our Effective Business Trips to Japan and Effective Meetings with Japanese courses. Meanwhile, we have seen increased interest in presentation skills training for Japanese, perhaps in preparation for those same meetings!  We have also been doing more pre-departure and post-arrival training for Japanese expatriates as overseas assignments begin again.

We continue to receive a lot of requests for DEI related work, and this year we created a new unconscious bias training session. Rather than simply a translation of an American-oriented course, our version is focused on key issues of relevance to Japanese participants. It’s been great to see Japanese executives participating in this session reflect meaningfully on their biases.

Servant leadership continues to be a popular topic for us, and I am currently writing a book about it in Japanese.

In addition to involvement in all of the above, I have been continuing writing columns for several publications and my commentary in the Nikkei’s digital edition. I have also been serving as a mentor through 500 Global to global startups looking to enter the Japanese market. Two of those startups were from Ukraine, and I talk about them as well as my analysis of Ukraine President Zelensky’s servant leadership in this new book (it was an honor to be on the cover between Joseph Nye and Francis Fukuyama!)

Outside of work, I have been an advocate working towards the presentation of Jingu Gaien, a historical green space in the center of Tokyo that is threatened by development. A petition I started now has over 110,000 signatures (please consider signing if you haven’t already, even if you don’t live in Japan). It received Change.org Japan’s Change Maker Award for 2022 in the “Speaking for The Earth and Animals Who Don’t Have a Voice” category.

Thanks much to our clients, partners and friends who have been so supportive this year as always. Wishing you a very happy new year, and a peaceful and successful 2023.