How to avoid well known mistakes when building business in Japan – failing in Japan will cost you dear
Don’t fall into the same old traps
There is a large range of well-known mistakes foreign companies have been making over and over again in Japan for many years. Surprisingly foreign companies continue to repeat these well-known mistakes over and over again!
Don’t make such well-known mistakes! (We can help you avoid them….)
Much of it is common sense. However, you also need to study a lot of facts about Japan, and customs. You will find that some assumptions you made are wrong!
You’ll also find that not everybody (Japanese and foreigners) tells you everything they know ;)
Most "well-known mistakes" lie within the organization of your own company!
- Sometimes problems in a Japanese subsidiary are best solved by changing responsibilities in the main office at home! We would be delighted to discuss such issues with you and work on a solution using our large range of experience.
A big "No-No": lack of market research and lack of preparations
- The biggest "no-no" is not to do proper preparation, or to start without a strategy. You can assume that normally your Japanese partners will do their preparations and they will have a big advantage, if you are unprepared. If you do not prepare well you certainly weaken your position. Lack of preparation cannot be compensated by macho behaviour or self-confidence or even arrogance.
- You will be surprised how many time consuming and expensive failures of Western companies are largely due to lack of preparation, lack of market information, and lack of planning. A very well-known Western company lost US$ 10 Billion or more in Japan and severaly damaged the brand because of lack of market knowledge. Market research in Japan often looks expensive, however expensive, good market research is almost certainly far cheaper than failure and withdrawal from Japan
Download Gerhard Fasol’s lecture slides at Stanford University: “New opportunities vs old mistakes – foreign companies in Japan’s high-tech markets”
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Japan business: how to succeed? Detailed answers:
- Why can business in Japan be difficult?
- Changes and new opportunities
- Avoid well known mistakes
- What can we do about the difficulties of Japan business?
- Japanese business etiquette
- Japanese business meetings
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