“We bring a lawyer and a contract. The Japanese bring a cup of tea.”
Negotiating with the Japanese: What are the similarities and what are the potential pitfalls? The Danish medico company, Alk Abello, contacted LIVING INSTITUTE to gain a deeper understanding of Japanese business culture, after having agreed upon a large contract covering development and license of a product manufactured by the Japanese. Observation: ‘When we arrive at a negotiation, we bring a lawyer and a contract. The Japanese bring a cup of tea.” The explanation lies within the differences between the two cultures. Danish culture prioritizes task over relation; in this case, having a signature on the contract. Opposite, Japanese culture prioritizes relation over task, which means that getting to know each other on beforehand determines if a working relation can be established. LIVING INSTITUTE facilitated two one-day workshops for managers and key employees about reaching a common goal despite different priorities in the meeting room. Click here to read an article in the Danish newspaper, ‘Politiken’, about Alk Abello’s and LIVING INSTITUTE’s cooperation (in Danish).