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Women in japanese companies

Roles, assumptions, expectations, communication style for women in Japanese companies. What can non-Japanese women do to overcome perceived barriers?

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Women in japanese companies

  1. 1. Women in Japanese companies Pernille Rudlin Rudlin Consulting Ltd
  2. 2. • Japanese social and historical context and recent changes • Cultural and gender influences on communication style • What to do?
  3. 3. Confucian influence • 5 relationships with mutual obligations righteous behaviour in the husband and obedience in the wife • Carry out obligations of role, for harmonious society
  4. 4. The Office Lady – 1980s Japan
  5. 5. Changes • Equal Opportunity Law in effect from 1986 • Temporary and part time workers increased since 1990s, now make up >36% of workforce • Declining birth, marriage rate • Abenomics – target of women filling 30 percent of senior positions in all parts of society by 2020, improve childcare, extend parental leave • Overtime…
  6. 6. Communication in Japan • • • • • Male/female language High female voice considered sexy Subject-Verb-Object order different Polite – don’t use “I”, use passive tense After hours “nominication”
  7. 7. Meetings • • • • Nemawashi Prepare the ground Consensus No open expression of disagreement • Juniors stay quiet • No one decision maker
  8. 8. Final thoughts • Use “feminine” communication style to gain trust of Japanese colleagues (less threatening than Western males) • Do nemawashi and show that it has been done • Offer to transfer to Japan headquarters • Explain to Western men that intelligence, seniority, competence more important to Japanese than gender • Send signals to Japanese men that not “administrative” – Make sure job status/qualifications clear – Willingness to do overtime when needed – Socialising • Seek out Japanese “sempai” (mentors)
  9. 9. Contact Us Pernille Rudlin Rudlin Consulting 96 Kingston Road, Leatherhead, Surrey KT22 7BT Pernille.rudlin@rudlinconsulting.com www.rudlinconsulting.com @pernilleru All contents of this presentation are copyrighted and may not be reproduced or used without permission
  10. 10. Contact Us Pernille Rudlin Rudlin Consulting 96 Kingston Road, Leatherhead, Surrey KT22 7BT Pernille.rudlin@rudlinconsulting.com www.rudlinconsulting.com @pernilleru All contents of this presentation are copyrighted and may not be reproduced or used without permission

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