The New Japanese Way of Doing Business!

THE NEW JAPANESE WAY OF DOING BUSINESS

CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES!

Dramatic changes have occurred in Japan’s way of doing business since the late 1980s and early 1990s when its economic juggernaut was literally stopped in its track by the rapid rise of global competition and the fact that the Japanese real estate and financial industries copied American practices that were doomed to failure.

    A new book by author Boyé Lafayette De Mente, JAPAN – Understanding & Dealing with the New Japanese Way of Doing Business, details how the Japanese way of doing business has morphed into a hybrid of traditional culture-based elements and Western practices, and provides insights in how to deal effectively with this new reality.

Known for his pioneer business related books on Japan—going back to Japanese Etiquette & Ethics in Business, published in 1959, and How to Do Business in Japan, published in 1962—De Mente’s new book provides foreign companies with guidelines for competing with the Japanese on the domestic as well as the international front.

“Some of the traditional elements of Japanese business that were the foundation of the country’s astounding rise from the devastation of World Word II to become the world’s second largest economy between 1952 and 1970 have not changed.

“But other aspects that reflect both Western practices and Japan’s resent-day high-tech-based social culture present new challenges as well as opportunities, De Mente says.

He adds that the changes Japanese businesses have made and are ongoing ensure that they will continue to play a major role in the world’s economy.

His books are available in digital and printed formats from Amazon.com, and from the Barnes & Noble bookstore chain as digital Nook books.

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Boyé Lafayette De Mente has been involved with Asia since the late 1940s as a member of a U.S. intelligence agency, journalist and editor. He is a graduate of Jōchi University in Tokyo, Japan and Thunderbird School of Global Management in Glendale, Arizona, USA. In addition to books on the business practices, social behavior and languages of China, Japan, Korea and Mexico he has written extensively about the plague of male dominance and the moral collapse of the U.S. and the Western world in general. Recent books include: CHINA Understanding & Dealing with the Chinese Way of Doing Business; JAPAN Understanding & Dealing with the NEW Japanese Way of Doing Business; AMERICA’S FAMOUS HOPI INDIANS; ARIZONA’S LORDS OF THE LAND [the Navajos] and SPEAK JAPANESE TODAY – A Little Language Goes a Long Way! To see a full list of his 60-plus books go to: www.authorsonlinebookshop.com. All of his titles are available from Amazon.com.

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The New Japanese Way of Doing Business!

   When the traditional Japanese way of doing business began to fail in the late 1980s, putting the brakes on the economic juggernaut that had made the country the second largest economy in the world in just 20 years following the end of World War II, Japanese businesspeople began to adopt selected Western practices. This process was speeded up in the 1990s when competition from South Korea, Taiwan and China became an even greater threat, resulting in a hybrid business system that continues to evolve today.

This book explains the rise and fall of Japan as the second largest economy in the world, describes the present-day still evolving system, including steps Japan’s business world is taking to make sure it still has a major role to play in the world economy.

While most of the new changes are taking place below the radar of the world at large they are harbingers of what the global economy is becoming and what other companies and countries must do to stay in the game. The book is available from Amazon.com in both digital [$4.95] and printed [$14.95] editions.

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Boyé Lafayette De Mente has been involved with Asia since the late 1940s as a member of a U.S. intelligence agency, journalist and editor. He is a graduate of Jōchi University in Tokyo, Japan and Thunderbird School of Global Management in Glendale, Arizona, USA. In addition to books on the business practices, social behavior and languages of China, Japan, Korea and Mexico he has written extensively about the plague of male dominance and the moral collapse of the U.S. and the Western world in general. Recent books include: CHINA Understanding & Dealing with the Chinese Way of Doing Business; JAPAN Understanding & Dealing with the NEW Japanese Way of Doing Business; AMERICA’S FAMOUS HOPI INDIANS; ARIZONA’S LORDS OF THE LAND [the Navajos] and SPEAK JAPANESE TODAY – A Little Language Goes a Long Way! To see a full list of his 60-plus books go to: www.authorsonlinebookshop.com. All of his titles are available from Amazon.com.

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In Japan Good Design is Everywhere!

Boyé Lafayette De Mente

 

TOKYO—In the 1960s and 70s a number of Japan specialists and media pundits predicted that Japan would become the world’s largest economy—bypassing and overshadowing the United States.

 

  Those predictions were naïve to say the least, but Japan has in fact become a world leader in a number of key areas that include technological advances in several scientific fields, particularly in the creation of new materials.

 

    This development is especially remarkable because invention and innovation were virtually taboo in Japan from the mid-1600s until the last decades of the 19th century, putting the Japanese some 200 years behind the Western world in scientific research and technology.

 

  But there is one area in which the Japanese have been more advanced than Westerners—intellectually as well as technologically—for well over a thousand years, and that is in the world of design and in the creation of arts and crafts that are superior in both design and quality.

 

   As far back as the 7th century Korean immigrants began bringing sophisticated Chinese art and craft technology to Japan. During the golden Heian period (794-1185) this technology and the accompanying master/apprentice system of training were integrated into Japan’s common culture.

 

     Each generation of artists and craftsmen raised the bar on the standards of design and quality until they reached the level of a fine art. When the first Westerners showed up in Japan in the 16th century they were astounded at the technological ability of the Japanese and the quality of their crafts.

 

     But it took the Japanese almost exactly one hundred years—from the 1860s to the 1960s—to get out from under the influence of foreign importers and to begin incorporating these traditional design and manufacturing skills into their export products—and the rest, as the saying goes, is history.

 

   Today, the philosophical and ethical principles that are the foundation of Japanese design and product quality are being adopted worldwide, creating what is now being called a new era of design.

 

  I have been promoting the traditional elements of Japanese design since the 1950s, and in 2006 published a new book on the subject entitled Elements of Japanese—Key Terms for Understanding & Using Japan’s Classic Wabi-Sabi-Shibui Concepts.

   The book identifies 65 concepts that constitute the heart of the Japanese design process and the products that result—beginning with the terms honshitsu (hone-sheet-sue) and seizui (say-zooey), which refer to the essence of Japanese design, and ending with Zen, which teaches one how to distinguish reality from all of the illusions that become embedded in our minds.

 

   The book offers new insights into the historical and cultural developments that are at the roots of the new international aesthetic movement—from wa (wah), harmony; kaizen (kigh-zen), continuous improvement; and mushin (muu-sheen), empty mind, to mujo (muu-joh), incompleteness.

 

  Despite the inroads that have been made in Japan by Westernization and modernization since the 1860s the traditional design and quality concepts are alive and well, and they are tangible and visible for all to see.

 

     Even in crowded Tokyo and other Japanese cities the evidence of good design and quality are visible on subways and trains and in the streets—on advertising posters, on storefronts, in product displays, in the architecture and interior furnishings of shops and restaurants, in buildings and offices.

 

  For the discerning foreign visitor in Japan, just a few days can be an extraordinary aesthetic and cultural experience that is the highlight of the trip. If you look closely, the whole country is a virtual museum of modern and traditional art that adds an emotional, intellectual and spiritual ambiance to daily life.

 

    And it is possible for those who are more highly tuned to both the beauty and functionality of Japanese design to literally step back in time before the appearance of Western concepts in the country, when only Japanese designs existed, by simply going through a door—into a traditional inn, restaurant or home.

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Boyé Lafayette De Mente has been involved with Asia since the late 1940s as a member of a U.S. intelligence agency, journalist and editor. He is a graduate of Jōchi University in Tokyo, Japan and Thunderbird School of Global Management in Glendale, Arizona, USA. In addition to books on the business practices, social behavior and languages of China, Japan, Korea and Mexico he has written extensively about the moral collapse of the U.S. along with books on his home state of Arizona. To see a full list of his books go to: www.authorsonlinebookshop.com. Recent books include: CHINA Understanding & Dealing with the Chinese Way of Doing Business; JAPAN Understanding & Dealing with the NEW Japanese Way of Doing Business; AMERICA’S FAMOUS HOPI INDIANS; ARIZONA’S LORDS OF THE LAND [the Navajos] and SPEAK JAPANESE TODAY – A Little Language Goes a Long Way!