alignment in a Japanese company

Getting on the Same Page in a Japanese Company – Why it is Important and How to Do it

The eleventh presentation of our Succeeding in a Japanese Company telesummit is Andrew Horvat talking about Getting on the Same Page in a Japanese Company – Why it is Important and How to Do It. The presentation will be posted at 9 am Pacific on March 20th. To listen, please register at

For more than two decades, Andrew filed stories from Japan for the Associated Press, the Los Angeles Times, and London’s Independent newspaper. Later he directed the Japan office of the Asia Foundation, a San Francisco-based non-profit before moving on to manage and teach at Stanford University’s overseas studies program in Kyoto. He has also held teaching positions at Japanese universities. As reporter, administrator and university instructor, Andrew has had to reconcile different ways of thinking and doing things. It is this experience that Andrew brings with him to Japan Intercultural Consulting, where he works with Japanese and non-Japanese audiences helping them to enhance their understanding of each other.

So many of the challenges that non-Japanese working in Japanese companies face have their root in the fact that not everyone is on the same page — they are working from a different set of assumptions, and with different information. These all fall under the category of what Japanese call joshiki — common sense. In this session, Andrew will discuss how people in Japanese firms develop a shared joshiki, and how non-Japanese can learn it as well. Topics to be covered include initiation rituals in Japanese firms, the nemawashi consensus-building process, and Japanese etiquette considerations.

During Andrew’s call you will discover…

  • Why Japanese workers often seem to be on the same page while non-Japanese workers can feel like they’ve been left out of the loop
  • 4 ways to stop feeling like and being an outsider and become part of a cohesive work team
  • How to use nemawashi to promote alignment and harmony
  • How to use PowerPoint in a joint effort with Japanese colleagues to get on the same page with them
  • Why Japanese workers judge you based on your acquaintance with Japanese customs and manners, and the 5 customs you must never break
  • Everything you need to know about proper Japanese etiquette to become one of the ‘family,’ rather than the weird uncle or aunt ostracized to the kiddy table