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All you need to know about negotiating in Japan

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  1. Negotiating group
  2. Importance of oral communication
    1. Preparation for business appointments in Japan
    2. Courtesy
    3. Knowledge of Japanese culture
  3. Intermediation as a first step towards a successful negotiation
  4. Personal relationships
  5. An obstacle to master: The language of work in Japan
  6. Arrive on time for business appointments
  7. Exchange of business cards 'meishi'
  8. During the business meeting
    1. Meeting rooms
  9. Planning ahead
  10. Identifying the leader
  11. The contract in Japan
  12. After the meeting

In Japan, commercial negotiation is most often carried out in groups; you almost never meet a Japanese alone to talk business, but a delegation made up of several players from the same company. In Japanese culture, a single individual has very little decision-making power because he is part of a group and has to inform the group of the discussions he has had with you. It is the group that makes decisions, and this consequently lengthens the negotiation.

[...] Personal relationships It is also clear that the relationship created is primarily personal. Indeed, Japanese culture places great importance on the person itself. The relationship established is between the Japanese counterpart and the person representative of the foreign company wishing to enter the Japanese market and not the company itself, which would be considered too impersonal. Modesty and humility are attitudes that will win you favour with your Japanese counterpart. An obstacle to master: the language of work in Japan In general, there aren't a lot of foreign languages used in Japan. [...]

[...] So, do not hesitate to write as many as documents relevant to your business meetings and contacts, in English as you please. The French do not have a better reputation with respect to the use of foreign languages, so if you speak English, do not hesitate to use small simple sentences and speak slowly so that your partner can grasp the information. Arrive on time for business appointments The Japanese are punctual and even show up for appointments with a few minutes to spare so as to be received at precisely the appointed hour. [...]

[...] You should also be aware that when you are in a business meeting with the Japanese, some of your attitudes will be judged, especially if they are contrary to Japanese culture. You must control how you present yourself and your behaviour during your business meetings. However, this does not mean that you do not remain true to yourself in front of the Japanese. During the business meeting The casual style is to be avoided during an appointment; therefore, dress in appropriate formal business attire. [...]

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