Hosting Japanese Business Visitors - Need the Cove members advice / opinion

Crusader

Trusted Information Resource
#1
My company is going to host Yamaha Motor Corp on Sept 24th. 5 men from California and 5 men from Japan. All Quality, Purchasing, Engineering, Planning personnel. They are going to evaluate my ISO system for possible new business.

Now for the tricky part...where I need input....

We're catering in lunch. What do you recommend we serve?
What would you do?

While we're here, what are the do's and don'ts??? I really do not know the Japanese culture at all.
 
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GStough

Staff member
Super Moderator
#2
Re: Need the Cove members advice / opinion

My company is going to host Yamaha Motor Corp on Sept 24th. 5 men from California and 5 men from Japan. All Quality, Purchasing, Engineering, Planning personnel. They are going to evaluate my ISO system for possible new business.

Now for the tricky part...where I need input....

We're catering in lunch. What do you recommend we serve?
What would you do?
How about some local specialties and some traditional Japanese dishes? It might also depend on how formal a visit this will be...
 

Crusader

Trusted Information Resource
#3
Re: Need the Cove members advice / opinion

How about some local specialties and some traditional Japanese dishes? It might also depend on how formal a visit this will be...
Thought about that and they're here in America....Japanese food here is certainly not the same!
 

GStough

Staff member
Super Moderator
#4
Re: Need the Cove members advice / opinion

Thought about that and they're here in America....Japanese food here is certainly not the same!
Well, how about a neutral cuisine, such as seafood and salad, for example? (Or any other similar cuisine)
 

Wes Bucey

Quite Involved in Discussions
#5
Re: Need the Cove members advice / opinion

All 10 are Yamaha folks right?
Ask the California folks what they'd suggest, since you are going to order it in and you want to be sure everyone is happy.

It's been a while since I hosted Japanese businessmen - they were all delighted with STEAK! (but that was dinner, not lunch on the fly in the factory) I do recall they brought me a case of Suntory whiskey as a "host gift.":D
 

Stijloor

Staff member
Super Moderator
#6
Re: Need the Cove members advice / opinion

My company is going to host Yamaha Motor Corp on Sept 24th. 5 men from California and 5 men from Japan. All Quality, Purchasing, Engineering, Planning personnel. They are going to evaluate my ISO system for possible new business.

Now for the tricky part...where I need input....

We're catering in lunch. What do you recommend we serve?
What would you do?

While we're here, what are the do's and don'ts??? I really do not know the Japanese culture at all.
Crusader,

Look here: "Hosting Japanese Guests."

There's a few links that look promising....

Good Luck!

Stijloor.
 

Caster

An Early Cover
Trusted Information Resource
#7
Re: Need the Cove members advice / opinion

My company is going to host Yamaha Motor Corp on Sept 24th. 5 men from California and 5 men from Japan. All Quality, Purchasing, Engineering, Planning personnel. They are going to evaluate my ISO system for possible new business. .
Forget lunch, they won't really care.

They also don't care about an ISO system. And I sure hope you are not alone to try to show this system.

The President and every member of the top team better greet them at the door to their hotel and stay for the entire visit, and supper, and drinks that night. Thats what they do for us when we visit.

You are about to meet some of the most detail oriented, competent, focused, hard working, smart people you have ever seen.

They will go to gemba and spend their time on your floor. Watch them spread out as they follow the flow, just try to lead them on a tour!

They actually laughed at our cellular manufacturing. Of which we were so extremely proud. Their thinking was decades ahead of ours.

It was hard to take. What we did with our CNC equipment they did with a simple used drill press. Our SPC system puzzled them to no end, their design was robust to variation.

We didn't even get asked to quote, again they laughed at our price.

The masters are coming, keep an open mind and open ears, it was a humbling yet excellent learning experience.
 

Miner

Forum Moderator
Staff member
Admin
#8
Re: Need the Cove members advice / opinion

I have worked closely with Japanese companies for many years. During working hours, they will be very professional. Simple courtesies go a long way. I recommend learning a few Japanese phrases such as Good Morning/Afternoon/Evening, Thank you. Learn the Business card ceremony in Japanese if possible. Small efforts are greatly appreciated.

Lunch can be simple, but not fast food. If you have a local Japanese restaurant that does bento box lunches, go for that. Steaks usually go very well for dinners. Note: Hibachi-style is not true Japanese. Sushi bars, tempura, or traditional (if you can find one) are more typical.

An operations management presence is very important. They usually expect most of the discussion to done by the technical experts, but when I visited the Japanese company, an upper manager was always present in meetings. The higher level management usually appeared at the closing meeting. There is usually an exchange of moderate priced, tasteful gifts between the higher level participants.

Will you be using an interpreter? If you use one, provide your own, so you get a full account. If they provide one, the interpreter will censor much of what they discuss amongst themselves. Also look at the one speaking, not the interpreter, and talk to the speaker, not the interpreter.

Japanese understand English much better than they speak it, so assume they understand everything that you say.

This is a good site for Japanese business etiquette as well as this site.
 
Last edited:
A

amanbhai

#9
Do we have to mould ourselves according to their culture when we are there? or we can have independence to maintain our values/or social etiquette.(at least to some extent)
Don't you think that they shall respect/ observe our values when they visit our countries? Just curious :notme:
 

Stijloor

Staff member
Super Moderator
#10
Do we have to mould ourselves according to their culture when we are there? or we can have independence to maintain our values/or social etiquette.(at least to some extent)
Don't you think that they shall respect/ observe our values when they visit our countries? Just curious :notme:
Establishing good (international) relationships takes an effort on both parties.

And I DO have experience with this.....;)

Stijloor.
 
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