* JAPAN Team: Tiffany Prom, Kristina Klimek, Connie Saenz Culture and Gender

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JAPAN
Team: Tiffany Prom, Kristina Klimek, Connie Saenz
Culture and Gender Issues in Management
Dr. McQueen
March 24th, 2022
It is essential for Foreign nationals interested in starting a business in Japan to understand the differences in cultural dimension. The success or failure of a business in Japan relies on the foreigner’s ability to know how the cultural dynamic informs social and business relationships or activities. Thus, this essay will assume the foreign national is an American businessperson seeking to expand their corporation to the Japanese market. As it stands, little research has been conducted on understanding how cultural practices impact business development and success, especially in the Japanese cultural context. So, we will offer critical information and facts that someone, such as an American businessperson, can consider when planning to conduct business in Japan.
Relevant history and demographics
The country of Japan, located in East Asia, has a population of around 126 million people. The sex ratio was .949, so 949 males per 1,000 females. The sex ratio in Japan is lower than the global sex ratio in 2021 which was about 1,016 males to 1,000 females. These numbers are constantly changing based on the births and deaths happening every day there (Japan Population, 2022). In Japan the population statistics appear homogeneous; 98.5% of the population is comprised of ethnic Japanese people. The country is also “currently the world’s oldest country, and it’s set to get even older” (Japan Population 2022 (live), 2022). In 50 years, it is estimated that there will be an equal ratio of 1:1 for workers to retirees (Japan Population 2022 (live), 2022).
Social Division in the Country – Gender Roles/ Expectations
Gender roles and expectations have made transformations throughout history. Japan was egalitarian in nature originally, but things started to change as they began adopting the ideas of Confucian ethics. A hierarchical society is expected with Confucianism and “the ethical system emphasizes a harmonious society in which a hierarchical structure is maintained” (Sugihara & Katsurada, 2002). This assumes men have dominance over women and children and subordinates are to obey their superiors. Confucian societies focus on the roles of men and women in the family. The head of the household is the man and women are meant to be dependent on them. In the society of Confucian, it is expected for “women to marry, produce heirs, and oversee the household” (Gender roles of women, 2019). Marriage was a business contract and was not always filled with love. If a wife was unable to have children, per the contract she could be sent back to her family as a failure. In tradition, “women’s happiness is found only in marriage” and if a woman was not married by the age of 27, she was typically outcast socially (Gender roles of woman, 2019).
After World War II, there was a big shift for Japan. Japan had shifted to a patriarchal system and gender roles began changing. Women were able to inherit property and family positions even though they were subordinate to men still. Women were also expected to show loyalty and bravery like men, while men were expected to be well-rounded and knowledgeable in literature and the arts (Sugihara & Katsurada, 2002). The Civil Code of 1947 made it possible for women to own property, inherit family estates, marry and divorce freely, gain parental rights, and to vote (Gender roles of woman, 2019). In modern Japan, loyalty and harmony are still a key focus. Women are still in charge of the household this includes the financial budget for the house, decisions, and of course the housework. The woman has control over the household and allows the man to be completely dedicated to their work. It is believed that men should be working outside of the home and women are better suited for the household work and raising the children. Although these ideas are persistent, things are changing as more women are branching out and starting careers for themselves and with marriage being delayed by both males and females now (Kincaid, 2019).
Gender participation in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) activities/programs/education
Women are hard to find in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) in Japan. There is an extremely low representation of women in STEM. Although it is one of the lowest, the numbers have been steadily increasing over a large gap of years. Over 23 years, 1996 to 2019, the percentage of female researchers in STEM went from 9.3% to 16.6%; that is an increase of 7.3% (Saitoh & Gasser, 2021). In a survey of professionals in science and technology fields, it suggested that in the high layers of the organization hierarchies that the proportion of woman was very small and they progressed slower than males The data from the survey also presented that a considerable amount of woman “are paid less and have limited access to research budgets in both industry and academic institutions” (Yoshikawa, Kokubo, & Wu. 2018). When looking at the gender expectations and how women are to bear household responsibilities and raising the children, the data suggested that because the women in the field were tending to these responsibilities, it prevented the female workers in the field from focusing on their careers at a critical point of development compared to the men in the field. This resulted in women falling behind men for career development and promotions (Yoshikawa, Kokubo, & Wu. 2018). Being a parent brings new challenges to men and women in careers. The work-life balance has become a setback for both genders, but specifically takes more of a toll on females because of the gender expectations. In a survey, the data showed “approximately 80% of female and 60% of male researchers are childless or have only one child” (Saitoh & Gasser, 2021). For a 80% of male researchers relied on their spouses to take care of their kid/s, while their main focus was work. For the same percentage of female researchers, 80%, they had to find some type of childcare like a day care center to allow them to work. Another hurdle female researchers face is being underrepresented in domestic and international conferences. This could be a result of women having to find childcare to be able to attend; only about 50% can rely on their spouses and about 50% must ask for help from friends or other family members (Saitoh & Gasser, 2021).
Government Type- Parliamentary Constitutional Monarchy System
Japan is a constitutional monarchy, with a parliamentary system of government based on the separation of powers. Its constitution came into force in 1947 and is based on the sovereignty of its people, respect for human rights and maintaining Japan as a peaceful and democratic country. There are three branches of government, legislative which are referred to as the Diet, executive is the cabinet and judicial are the courts. The Diet is the most powerful branch and takes precedence over the government’s executive branch. It consists of two houses, The House of Representatives (Shugiin) known as the lower house and the House of Councilors (Sangiin) known as the upper house. Members of the Diet have important roles like approving the national budget, ratifying international treaties, and starting any formal proposals for amending the constitution. Unlike the United States the Japanese do not elect a president directly instead Diet members elect a prime minister among themselves. The prime minister organizes and heads the executive branch. He directs the National Cabinet and is the commander-in-chief of the Japan Self-Defense Forces; he is appointed by the emperor of Japan after being designated by the National Diet and must enjoy the confidence of the House of Representatives to remain in office. (Prime Minister of Japan, 2022) The judicial power lies within the Supreme court and the lower courts, like high courts, district courts and summary courts. The Supreme court in Japan consists of a Chief Justice and fourteen other justices. There is a lack of women in politics in Japan, including in the courts. The number of female judges has been rising but at a very slow pace, in 2019 out of a total of 3,384 court judges across Japan only 787 were female judges.
Japan still has an existing monarchy; it is one of the oldest monarchies in the world. The Japanese monarchy has been in existence since around 660 B.C, and physical evidence of its reign dates roughly to 300A.D. Today the imperial house of Japan has a symbolic role but no executive or military power within the Japanese state. (Blakemore, 2019) The monarchy has a limited political function and minimal political roles. Any state functions by the emperor must get advice and approval from the cabinet first. Through the decisions of the Diet, the role of the Emperor consists of appointing the Prime Minister and announcing any laws and treaties approved. Members of the Imperial family serve Japan by receiving state guests and traveling overseas to visit other countries. They play an important role in promoting international friendships through these activities. Presently there are only a total of 17 royals including five unmarried females. Only males of the royal family that can trace their imperial linkage on their father’s side can become an Emperor. If a female royal marries a commoner, she is required to leave the imperial household. (Writer, 2021) Many are concerned about the royal family shrinking more and more throughout the years if they don’t change these existing conditions.
Unitary State
A unitary state is a governing system in which a single central government has total authority over all the country’s political subdivisions. Japan has a Unitary rather than a federal system divided into 47 prefectures and numerous municipal governments. Prefectures, which are administered by governors and assemblies, vary considerably both in area and in population. (Cameron, 2022, local government, para. 2) Tokyo is Japan’s most populated prefecture and also the capital. Cities, towns and villages are subdivisions of the prefectures and have their own local government. They have many responsibilities that include building and maintaining infrastructure, including utilities. They are also responsible for providing education, welfare and other services.
Management Practices Theory X or Y
Douglas McGregor was an early American management theorist that classified attitudes and belief systems; he believed employees were motivated through the attitudes of their managers or leaders. This was known as Theory X and Theory Y managerial styles. Managers with theory X attitudes feel that employees dislike work, they distrust their employees and feel they need to be closely supervised. Managers with theory Y attitudes have an optimistic view on their employees and assume employees want to work.
Japanese management can be described as Theory X attitudes. Information flows from the bottom to the top so senior management does the majority if not all the supervision rather than allowing employees the freedom to have a more hands on approach to the job. Employees have a strong loyalty to their superiors. Leaders in a company recognize employees as assets but unlike American culture Japanese leaders don’t view employees as individuals. The tasks are assigned and expected to be completed by a group not an individual. Leaders in Japan strive to be good role models and pay much attention to what is happening with lower-level employees. They believe this is a way of earning trust from the employees. Top executives have a lot of power in the company but little involvement in the everyday tasks of the company.
Work Environment
Japan has a unique work environment with very different cultures from other countries. When companies hire employees, they use a lifetime-employee system, they hire with the intention of the new employee staying there until the end of their career. The company will invest in the employee’s education and training. All new employees are hired with a standard wage and receive job advancements and raises based on the years of service. This promotion system discourages employees from switching jobs. Japanese companies assign tasks and projects to be worked on in groups. Offices in Japan have an open office layout rather than cubicles or personal offices, this is a lot cheaper for the company and encourages teamwork. Management can have better control to make sure employees are not distracted or working on anything unrelated to work. There is much more formality in comparison to the United States, most offices require business attire or a uniform. Teamwork is a big part of the work culture and everyone on the team carries part of the workload. For this reason, taking days off like vacation, or calling in sick has negative effects on the whole team. Many employees are expected to work long hours and management views time away from the office as a bad thing. Many employees go without using their sick or vacation time. Working hours for the Japanese is such a serious issue that “karoshi” a word that translates as “death by overwork” is a legal cause of death. One reason for the extraordinary number of hours Japanese work is a promotion system that is rooted in a seniority system. (Just Landed, 2014) For these companies’ quantity over quality is what gets them opportunity advancements.
Career Success or Quality of Life
Understanding cultural differences in various global markets helps promote success. Geert Hofstede a Dutch management researcher, created a cultural dimensions theory that determines the dimensions in which cultures vary. One of the four cultural dimensions is career success and quality of life. Career success can be described as competitive, materialistic, not showing concern for other people, and usually has strong gender roles. Cultures that are considered to follow a quality-of-life show modesty, concern for others and have more fluid gender roles. Japan can be categorized as a career success culture. In fact, according to Hofstede’s original sample Japan is number one in the world in this dimension, but this too is changing. One reason occurred in 1986, when the equal opportunity legislation removed many legal barriers to women in the workplace. (Bergiel, 2012) The percentage of women quitting their job to stay home after having children is still very high, there is a small number choosing to go back to work after giving birth. Compared to other parts of the world Japan is just now beginning to accept women performing the same tasks as men when it comes to careers. Although things are slowly changing it is still very difficult for women to climb the ladder of success at the same speed a man can.
Dos and don’ts
Understanding the dos and don’ts is critical to not offending individuals from other cultures. The cultural differences between America and Japanese show in the patience each has to process. Americans are more focused on the end results, while Japanese are more focused on the process (Ford & Honeycutt Jr., 1992). Thus, patience is essential when interacting with other business people, especially when participating in traditional ceremonies such as the tea ceremony.
Another thing someone conducting business in Japan should know is to wait to be directed or served. Yamamoto and Lloyd (2019) note that in addition to Japan’s curiosity about the outside world, the people’s keenness to learn from others is outstanding (p.120). The foreigner should also be willing to learn either through direction or observation to avoid being offensive to the people and their culture. Although the Japanese may be open to offering leniency for foreigners, in some cases, it may negatively affect the business relationships.
Additionally, foreigners must carry out some form of research into Japan’s social and business protocol. For example, what does a bow (ojigi) mean, and who should one bow to, and are foreigners expected to bow? Seeking such answers can go far to helping foster a trusting relationship with prospective Japanese businesses. Japanese culture is essential to its people, and a foreigner who shows interest in learning about the culture without being disrespectful can be an added advantage.
Lastly, foreigners interested in doing business in Japan should not decline any invitation to socialize. Business in Japan is not limited to the office. Managers or seniors often get involved in social activities with their juniors to develop the “family” feeling essential to maintaining harmony and unity (Ford & Honeycutt Jr., 1992). Thus, the foreigner may be called upon to participate in these social events, and it may be a way of seeing how well they fit with the group. Even when the social invitation may seem frivolous, the foreigner should accept.
Social and business etiquette
There are social and business protocols that foreigners must adhere to. The first is paying close attention to hierarchy. Hierarchy governs both social and business relations. Thus, seniors must be paid due respect for their role. Therefore, the senior is accorded the needed respect in the business environment. Seniority in Japan is not just in position but age. Due to the influence of Confucian ideals, social and business hierarchy are influenced by an individual’s age (Ford & Honeycutt Jr., 1992). Thus, the foreigner must respect those senior to them in the social context.
A second, in line with the above protocol, is that confrontation is frowned upon, especially challenging a senior in front of juniors or others. The objective of being polite is to maintain the group’s harmony, and confronting a senior disrupts this (Ford & Honeycutt Jr., 1992). The aim is to avoid making the leader look bad in front of others.
A third protocol is on business cards or meishi. According to Ford & Honeycutt Jr., (1992), the exchange of meishi is a form of business protocol. The proper processes must be followed to avoid being offensive (Ford & Honeycutt Jr., 1992). For example, use both hands, the Japanese side facing up, and when receiving the Japanese counterpart’s card before placing it on the table, make a show of inspecting it. All this adds to the process-oriented ideology that makes up Japanese culture. In fact, until business cards are exchanged, a business meeting cannot begin.
A fourth protocol is that one must frequently express gratitude and apologies. Unlike in American culture, where apologies are reserved for when someone has done something wrong, in Japan, it is a form of being polite, not necessarily acknowledging responsibility (Yamamoto & Lloyd, 2019). These go far in gaining group favor, which is essential.
Ethical considerations
Ethical considerations in business in Japan are influenced by spiritual and normative ethics, which transcends throughout every aspect of Japanese culture. (Yamamoto & Lloyd, 2019) identifies two normative contexts that influence individual and social behavior, namely transcendental and collective normative context. This means ethical considerations are made, understanding that enlightenment is achieved through being part of the collective, selflessness is an important virtue.
As a result, work is seen as an essential contribution to society. It is through work that individuals within Japanese society can attain the highest form of enlightenment. This ideology is what has been passed from one generation to the next and is fostered by the beliefs of three religions, Confucianism, Buddhism, and Shintoism (Yamamoto & Lloyd, 2019). Thus, an individual’s role is centered on the collective’s needs, which applies to the different groups they belong to. For example, fathers are the heads of the family while mothers are primary caregivers, which helps maintain harmony and unity and fosters the ability to survive (Yamamoto & Lloyd, 2019). This harmony is vital in Japanese culture because it is believed that it ensures a solid and durable family unit and takes care of the extended family, such as the grandparents and the elderly.
Another ethical consideration is maintaining the collective is the idea of “saving face,” which is being polite and humble. For example, seniority determines the level of respect one receives; it must always be assumed where seniority is hard to decide on (Ford & Honeycutt Jr., 1992). Understanding such factors can be vital in selecting employees for one’s business.
Collectivist culture
Understanding whether a culture is collectivist is vital. Hofstede lists Japan among cultures with collectivist characteristics, where the needs of the groups are prioritized over those of the individual (Adler & Gundersen, 2008, p.51). Thus, there are some things Americans should understand to be successful in doing business in Japan:
Decision-making in business proceedings is a group activity. In the U.S., the executive is left to make such decisions; in Japan, the whole group is involved. The objective is to ensure that everyone’s concerns are met and that harmony and unity are pursued (Ford & Honeycutt Jr., 1992). Thus, an American must exercise patience in the process and not place pressure on leaders to make decisions.
The collective is also seen in the loyalty employees give towards their organization. While in the U.S., the contract is valid until the employee feels his self-interest is not met. In Japan, loyalty begets loyalty; where the employee is loyal, the organization honors them with possible long-term employment (Ford & Honeycutt Jr., 1992). Every decision is made to better the organization’s long-term survival, which will also benefit the individual.
Thus, if there is an issue or complaint, it should not be done in front of everyone. Instead, the proper channels should be followed. For example, if the problem is with the manager, an American should check on their language, tone, gestures, and facial expressions to avoid coming off as aggressive. The collective is maintained through harmony and being polite (Ford & Honeycutt Jr., 1992). Even when there is a problem, the American must be keen to “save face” of those involved.
The collectivist culture is not just in the business context but social as well. “Paul Taylor” shows the proper way of conducting business in that it involves navigating the different social and business relationships,’ For example, while working at Nespresso, he understood that they must get permission from owners before installing the machines (Grossberg, 2017). Such understanding is vital to maintaining working relationships.
Uncertainty avoidance and power distance
Japan and the U.S. culture heavily differ on uncertainty avoidance and power distance. Based on the position created by Geert Hofstede, U.S. and Japan are on different quadrants, with the former being ““a village market” small power distance and weak uncertainty avoidance” while the latter is “a “pyramid of people” with a large power distance and a strong uncertainty avoidance” (Adler & Gundersen, 2008, p.56). This is evident in how the two cultures believe about hierarchy, interactions within the organization, and how risk-averse they are.
In the U.S., hierarchy is not a defining factor creating a village-like organization, where everyone can talk to anyone. Thus, it is not hard to find promotions being awarded to young individuals. In Japan, however, hierarchy is essential and defines every aspect of social and business context. Thus, one’s brilliance or IQ does not warrant a promotion; hence, most seniors are above 55 (Ford & Honeycutt Jr., 1992). This Hierarchy even extends into the home of the Japanese where the man is the head of the household and is expected to make critical decisions related to the child’s schooling while the woman’s decisions surround the home. The hierarchy order is not limited to the people but extends to the organizations. The decision-making process follows this structure, where all decisions must be passed through the proper channels.
Additionally, traditional gender roles are maintained. Japan is ranked among the most masculine nations in the world. Women often take up the “invisible” roles in the home or manual labor-related or service roles outside the home (Yamamoto & Lloyd, 2019). Thus, there are very few women on the highest parts of the pyramid. Therefore if the American is a female, she must be informed on the etiquette required when interacting with men/males in social and business etiquette.
Career success
Where selflessness is preferred to selfishness, there is bound to be conflict. Thus, career success is placed on high priority over quality of life. Therefore it is typical for the Japanese to work at least 60 hour weeks (Yamamoto & Lloyd, 2019). This means that at least six days a week are spent in the workplace. The stress of a large workload has led to the rise of karoshi, which is a phenomenon where individuals die due to work-related exhaustion (Yamamoto & Lloyd, 2019). Lack of work-life balance has affected the mental health of many Japanese employees.
An American interested in doing business in Japan should take keen note of the work-centric attitude of the people. The pride and joy come from being productive members of society, which allows them to contribute to the organization, and towards attaining their spiritual enlightenment, which is gained through work.
It may be due to the strong Japanese career success mindset that maternity and paternity leave is almost non-existent. Although limited maternity leave may occasionally be granted, Paternity leave is rarely, if ever practiced. As a result of limited maternity leave many Japanese women in the workforce choose to leave work and become homemakers after falling pregnant.
Conclusion
In Conclusion it is essential for a foreign national interested in starting a business in Japan to understand the differences in cultural dimension, because the success or failure of the business may rely on it. The Japanese culture influences the way their people conduct business and the differences an American may encounter might shock someone who is ignorant to the cultural differences. Some of the largest differences in American and Japanese culture presented in this essay consist of Career Success being rated higher than quality of life, differences in uncertainty avoidance and power distance, work environment and Japanese Collectivism Vs. American Individualism. Although the differences listed are important to understand and acknowledge, the differences do not define the failure or success of a foreigner conducting business in Japan. Instead, once an American person is no longer culturally blind to the Japanese way of life the next step is to use this knowledge to their advantage and begin to strategize team synergy.
Team Synergy
Cultural Synergy is an approach to managing the impact of cultural diversity in teams by ensuring cultural diversity is not ignored but rather used as a resource to develop organizational systems (Adler & Gundersen, 2008). Although every member in our team would ultimately reject a global assignment to Japan, we have learned enough to create and maintain cultural synergy if we were forced to go on assignment despite our concerns. As a team we all recognize that there are many differences in Japanese and American business culture, but understanding those differences is the first step in bringing about cultural synergy. Our team would build synergy of diversity and multiculturalism as a competitive advantage when dealing within the country of Japan by using our knowledge of Japanese culture and our personal culture to leverage and develop new solutions to problems while also respecting each other’s cultural uniqueness (Adler & Gundersen, 2008).
Kristina Klimek Denial for Global Assignment in Japan
I, Kristina Klimek, would not accept a Global Assignment opportunity in Japan. After exploring business etiquette in Japan there are many things that I am impressed with such as the politeness offered, the collectivist culture, making decisions as a team and the work ethic in Japan, but for me the negatives outway the positives. First and foremost, I would never want to work for a place who looks down on women simply because they are women. I understand that Japan is one of the most masculine countries in the world and that is their culture, but unfortunately that is a piece of culture I would not be willing to accept. I could not imagine working hard for a company only to be denied promotion, because of the way they value hierarchy.
I would also not want to work in a country that normalized the lack of maternity and paternity leave. I think it is sad that it is almost expected that a woman will leave a job when she becomes pregnant. In American culture, many women return to the workplace after maternity leave and I think this should be normalized worldwide. I think this also may in part be due to the Japanese career success mindset over quality of life. It is likely the Japanese way of ensuring a home and work life balance without having to sacrifice work ethic. I can understand why the Japanese culture may be this way, but I personally would not be able to accept this as a personal norm.
This leads me to my final reason as to why I would not accept a global assignment in Japan. As much as I admire the Japanese work ethic I would never want to abide by it. I do value my work and career, but I will always value quality of life over career success. Japanese workers often work 6 days a week and over 60 hours a week, leading to a phenomenon of many Japanese people dying due to work related stress. This is just very sad to me. While I understand valuing career success, what is the point of having an affluent career if you can not live long enough to enjoy it? There is so much more to life than work and I could not see myself buying into a 60 hour work week and working 6 days a week. So, unfortunately I would ultimately deny the opportunity for Global Assignment in the country of Japan. Although America is not perfect, I would still prefer it to Japan.
Tiffany Prom Denial for Global Assignment in Japan
I, Tiffany Prom, would not accept a Global Assignment opportunity in Japan. The biggest reason I decided that I would not accept follows a lot of the standards that come with gender roles in the country. With the research our group discussed and wrote about, I think a lot of things always come back to being a woman. As we know, gender roles are everywhere to include America, but I ask myself, why should I explore a new country where I believe the hierarchy truly has no regards for many women in business, especially one coming from the outside. It is already difficult to challenge and defeat the gender norms here, so I don’t know if I would be willing to try there.
Another reason I would choose to deny the opportunity is because of how important career success is to their culture over quality of life. Being a mother is my biggest and most important job to me. Being expected to work 6 days and at least 60 hours a week is just not ideal to me. I just honestly would not want to be working a schedule like that especially with a family at home. I believe that even without a husband or children, that I still would not want to be working that much. I take pride in my work and my work ethic, but I also find it more important to enjoy the life I have. If I am overseas for a global assignment, I am not going to want to spend my entire time there just working. I am going to want to explore the country and their culture and having to work every week like that wouldn’t allow me to do that. Working that much must cause an abundant amount of stress for individuals and limit the time they have to enjoy the world.
I do believe that Japan would have a lot to offer for a global assignment, but knowing my beliefs, values, and overall attitude I would not want to accept it, at least not right now. If this was something that I had to do for my job, I would and I would learn to adapt to their business and personal culture. With having the option to take this opportunity though, ultimately, I would not accept. I would say that in life right now, I have made standards for myself that I would not be willing to compromise in exchange for the opportunity. I would say my last reason isn’t necessarily a decision based on something specific in their culture, but more or less just where I am in life. I questioned a lot of things about the assignment and where I could go or not go from it. I think about things relating to the career like promotions and growth, but I also think about things like my family and my mental health.
Connie Saenz Denial of Global Assignment in Japan
Although I found many of Japan’s cultures and practices very interesting I feel as a woman graduating college and stepping out into the career field I would decline a global assignment in Japan. The biggest reason would be the strong gender roles that are changing, but still very present in the workplace. I was shocked to see such a small number of women in politics and the fact that there are only 787 female judges out of 3,384 shows the lack of female representation in Japan. Although they did state that most legal barriers have been removed for women in the workplace I don’t believe that it has changed enough. It will be a very slow process for me as a female to successfully grow with a company in Japan.
Another reason I would choose to decline would be the long hours that are expected for employees to work. I like the practice they follow of working in teams, but I don’t agree with the idea that taking days off makes you a bad employee. I believe a good employee needs balance in order to avoid burnout. In my research I found that karoshi means “death by overwork” and is a legal cause of death in Japan. I enjoy working and being successful at my job is important to me, but not to the point where that is the only thing I live for.
Finally Japan is highly categorized as a career success culture. The belief that quantity over quality is what is important when it comes to work. This makes it very difficult for women that choose to have a family advance their careers. Because they put career success over quality of life there is no work life balance. That goes against my culture and the values that are important to me, family is a priority and I believe there is a way to be successful at work and still make time for family. Being offered a global assignment in Japan would definitely be a great learning experience, but because their culture is so much more different than my culture and the things I feel are important to me I would have to decline the opportunity.
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Team Project
Japan
1. Relevant history and demographics
Population
2. Social divisions in the country
A. Gender roles
1. Male Expectations
2. Female Expectations
3. Gender participation in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) activities/programs/education
A. Ratio of men to women
4. Nature of the government and management practices
A. Government type
1. Parliamentary constitutional monarchy system
2. Unitary state
B. Management Practices- theory X or Y
C. Work environments
D. Career Success or Quality of Life
5. Critical info and facts to know if someone wants to do business in the country of Japan (identify 5).
A. Dos and don’ts
B. Social and business etiquette
C. Ethical consideration
D. Collectivist Culture- Being that Japan is a collectivist culture, what are some things that an American should understand in order to properly conduct business in Japan. The USA is mostly individualistic.
E. How does uncertainty avoidance and Power Distance differ from the USA and Japan and what should an American know to help with business relations in Japan when it pertains to uncertainty avoidance and Power Distance.
F. Career Success Vs. Quality of life. What are some things in Japanese business life that show that they value career success over quality of life? How might this affect an American business person and how should someone prepare? Examples consist of working hours, working days, sick days, leave days, maternity leave, paternity leave….
6. Would team members accept or reject a global assignment to the country?
A. 3 reasons to acceptance or rejection
7. How would the team build synergy of diversity and multiculturalism as competitive advantages when dealing with/in the country?
8. Short conclusion that ties the paper together