Working with the Japanese

Working with the Japanese is a highly interactive programme which combines discussion, case studies, role play and video.


  • Develop a solid understanding of the Japanese mentality and business culture
  • Understand how your way of communicating and behaving may be interpreted in Japan
  • Acquire practical strategies for working more effectively with the Japanese
  • Identify concrete steps to enhance your ability to influence and negotiate across cultures

Who should attend?

  • Managers of companies looking to expand their business activities into the Japanese market
  • Individuals and teams who regularly work with Japanese colleagues and business partners
  • Sales representatives and purchasing agents
  • Marketing professionals


This is a 2-day course.

Course content

1/ Foundations of Japanese culture

  • Key geopolitical, historical and geographical factors
  • Religions of Japan and their social and cultural impact
  • Key features of the Japanese language
  • The Japanese society today

2/ Key cultural dimensions to measure cultural gaps and similarities

  • Low and high power distance
  • Uncertainty avoidance and acceptance
  • Individualist and collectivist cultures
  • Ways of thinking
  • Monochronic and polychronic time orientations
  • Low and high context communication
  • Duty and honour codes

3/ Commucating effectively with the Japanese

  • Greetings and titles
  • Welcoming rituals
  • Business cards
  • Non-verbal communication: eye contact, personal space, gestures and physical contact
  • Verbal communication: Implicit messages, the meaning of “yes”
  • Influencing techniques

4/ The business world in Japan

  • Types of Japanese companies
  • Management and leadership styles
  • Teamwork
  • Decision-making
  • Hierarchy and respect for age
  • Giving and saving face
  • Meetings
  • Motivational levers
  • Women in the workplace
  • Socialising and networking

5/ Decision-making and team/project management

  • Nemawashi and decision-making
  • Preparing for your first key project

6/ Negotiating agreements

  • Preparing for a negotiation
  • Adopting the right posture
  • Oral vs. Written agreements

7/ Top tips and personal action plan