21

May 2018

Will Japanese Work Culture ever rule the world?

Japan is one of the few countries in the world whose work culture and work ethics offer some startling lessons to learn. Just go through some of the proverbs:
Japan has a philosophy that the harder we work; the better life will be…
Be not afraid of going slowly, be afraid of standing still.
None of us is as smart as all of us.
The day you decide to do it is your lucky day.
If you try, you may succeed. If you don’t try, you will not succeed. This is true for all things. Not succeeding is the result of not trying.

Japanese workers are famous for their inexhaustible dedication to their tasks and ability to work long hours. For average Japanese a workday is around 12 to 14 hours. The exhaustive work culture is so common that they have a specific term for the death from overwork known as “karōshi”. Just look at its prevalence, there is a national karōshi hotline, a karōshi self-help book, a karōshi law that provides financial help to the widow and children of the person who died of karōshi.

1.Venerate the business card :
A meeting in Japan starts with a formal and highly ceremonious exchange of business cards, a ritual referred to as meishi kokan. When receiving a card, a businessman takes it with both hands, reads it over carefully, repeats the printed information aloud, and then places it in a cardholder or on the table in front of him, referring to it in conversation when needed. He never drops it in his pocket. That is considered disrespectful.

2- Defer to your elders :
It’s customary in a meeting in Japan to always direct one’s initial comments to the highest-ranking person present. One never disagrees with him and always gives him his due attention. When bowing — the standard Japanese greeting — one should always bow deepest to the most senior man.

3- Instill motivation through slogans :
Many Japanese businesses start their day off with a morning meeting, where workers line up and chant the company’s slogans as a way of inspiring motivation and loyalty, and as a means of keeping the company’s goals fresh in their minds.
4- The young Japanese working themselves to death
Japan has some of the longest working hours in the world, and some young Japanese workers are literally working themselves to death. Now there are calls for the government to do more.

5- Clocking off: Japan is busy working culture for a long time
The regulation eight hours in the office is over. The most important work of the day is done; whatever is left can wait until the morning. This is the point many workers would think about heading for the door.

Yet for millions of Japanese employees, the thought of clearing away their desks and being at home in time for dinner is enough to invite accusations of disloyalty.

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