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The Good And The Bad Of Japanese Work Etiquette

The Good And The Bad Of Japanese Work Etiquette

Japan’s work etiquette is definitely one of the outstanding factors that set the Japanese people apart from the rest of the world. Many foreigners who have gone in the country to work for a few months or years attest to how serious they are in performing well in their offices. This is primarily because such a trait is already deeply-rooted in their culture. The parents pass on to their children whatever principles they have about toiling hard. With that, even the young breed of professionals is convicted to perform exceptionally.

Are you bound to get employed in Japan? Or, simply curious how employment is like there? The rest of this article may be able to give you a quick overview of these things.

There are a couple of native terms which you may encounter when Japanese work etiquette is talked about. These are ‘gambatte’ and ‘karaoushi. The first term simply means ‘Do your best!’ or ‘Don’t give up!’ in English. This concept quite explains the ambience in their workplace. In their aim to give their best in all the tasks, local employees start with their jobs ten minutes earlier and end their jobs ten minutes later than the set working hours. They do this even when there is no overtime pay. Somehow, the local employees see this as the most reliable way to get noticed by their bosses and get a salary increase or a deserved promotion.

Moving forward, the second term means ‘death from work’.’ Karoushi’ shows the negative effect or overworking. This is hurting the image of employment in Japan as deaths of capable employees result from it. Local workers usually endure a sixty-hour work week without extra pay or benefits which is contrary to the forty-hour work week that other employees in other countries enjoy. Heart failure or recklessness with their health conditions causes overburdened employees to literally drop dead while performing their tasks.

Believe it or not, both terms also mirror the positive things about the Japanese working culture. For one, doing your best even without rewards is the foundation of loyalty to one’s company. Dedication to produce a satisfactory output is another advantage of such culture. The same is true for discipline and keen eye for details.

When it comes to punctuality, no one can beat the Japanese. Once a client or customer comes to them, employees rush to attend to their needs. This is somehow related to the fact that they take pride in whatever job they have. There is no small or big job for them so long as they do their best to get things right. This is very evident even to those who are devoted to the daily operations of small businesses established in different localities.

Every country has distinctive work etiquette. When getting employed overseas, this is something which you must be careful to observe to keep good relations with your employer and co-employees. You may not enjoy this during your first few months of stay in Japan. But you will surely benefit from it in time.

Article publié pour la première fois le 28/01/2016

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