MONTH

2020年12月

    • December 29, 2020
    • April 20, 2022

    End of Year Greetings with Gratitude from Japan 2020

    Competing for people’s time online What’s the difference between Black Friday and Cyber Monday? As I checked them on Wikipedia, the former came into use in 70’s; the latter was just born in 2005. I feel both are fast spreading also in Japan in these few years. Now that the main sales battlefield is online, they are synonym to me. Actually, in the U.S., Black Friday 2020 online sales gained more than 20% on 2019, while store traffic was down by more than 50%. Coupled with the COVID pandemic, a battle for online sales becomes more severe. In other words, companies are now competing for people’s time online. This is not somebody else’s issue. I very well know I’m a part of the competition. Today, let me explain the logic and strategy behind this blog. Logic and strategy behind this blog In most cases, the articles of the blog start […]

    • December 22, 2020
    • March 29, 2022

    Empathy Is the Key to Survival

    Wolves everywhere In the movie “Wolf of Wall Street,” Jordan Belfort sounded off “I’ve been telling you guys not to take no for an answer, to keep pushing, to not hang up the phone ‘til you get what you want.” In the movie “The Founder,” Dick McDonald regretted making a business partnership with Ray Kroc, saying “There’s a wolf in the hen house.” The business world is a battle field where wolves are ruthlessly killing each other. Many people would think like that. At least, I did. When I worked at the Ministry of Finance, what unfolded right before my eyes was exactly that. One mistake can lead to the end of a career. The mistakes of others taste like honey. IT giants are not wolves As naturally imagining the same dramas would happen in Silicon Valley, I was surprised by a book written by Stanford University online high school […]

    • December 18, 2020
    • March 29, 2022

    He Is Rich That Few Wants

    International Division of Labor In these past few years, I’ve come to see many conveyor-belt sushi restaurants in any place around the world. I don’t know the price range of those restaurants overseas. In Japan, conveyor-belt sushi restaurants are thought to be cheap, like fast food restaurants. About 30 years ago, sushi was still a special treat even for Japanese people. It was only a birthday and the last day of the year when I could eat sushi in my childhood. It’s not only about food. I believe you can think of many other examples similar to this. Do you know how these changes happen? Because we get rich? Due to productivity improvement? They may be partially correct and wrong. I believe the main reason would be “International Division of Labor (IDOL).” This spell will come back to bite us. The result of a harsh international competition If you’re interested […]

    • December 15, 2020
    • March 29, 2022

    Worker Ant Theory

    Teal organization Did you know that viruses are not organisms? The super-simple definition of an organism is an object consisting of a cell (cells) and self-replicating. In other words, viruses are a good counter-example to organisms. I learned it only after the COVID pandemic started. The above definition of an organism is just my fake interpretation, though. The point is it seems much more difficult to define an organism than we imagine. Now, can you guess how this story is related to the title of this article? When I learned this surprising fact, some counter-example came up in my mind. Opposite to viruses, something that is never thought to be but behaves like an organism. It’s an organization, a group of people. As some of you may have already noticed, today’s theme is especially about a “teal organization” proposed by Frederic Laloux. A group of people can be an organism […]

    • December 11, 2020
    • March 29, 2022

    The Restoration of Human Communication

    Direct marketing Until last year, before the COVID pandemic, I traveled around the world and saw many people on business. Now, my life (work) style has changed significantly. I just go to work and straight back home. Although people around me would feel the same way, I’m fed up with seeing the same faces at work and home every day. This big change has told me a lot. How much I like my past life (work) style, even though that was always a series of all-night trips. How much important changes and communication with people are to me. I may ask too much for life, but we social animals are not satisfied only with food and drink. Would you agree? If yes, direct marketing is highly recommended for you. Marketing finely tuned for each customer In my definition, the key point of direct marketing is two-way communication. I think the […]

    • December 8, 2020
    • April 20, 2022

    Which Do You Want to Be, Generalists or Specialists?

    The principle of 10000 hours Many people seem to discuss this issue a lot these days. Probably, we are afraid that robots may take over human jobs in the near future. In Japan, generalists have dominated the business world for a long time, but the odds may become against them. The future of even specialists is not completely secured, though. Some business books say we need two specialized skills in order to compete robots in business. That sounds desperate especially to generalists like me. You’ve heard about the principle of 10000 hours, right? Malcolm Gladwell has written we must spend at least 10000 hours to become a true master of any skill. It seems almost impossible for a generalist to aim for a specialist from today. Can we (generalists) escape this certain death? Generalists seeing the bigger picture While struggling in despair, I found a book with an encouraging title […]

    • December 4, 2020
    • April 26, 2022

    Why Are Memories More Beautiful?

    Our memories are glorified When I was a kid, my father often took me to rivers, lakes, etc. to fish. In one of my unforgettable memories was a small river. There were some small waterfalls aligned in a row. I fished a lot! Oddly enough, my father always says he doesn’t know such a place. To make matters worse, he says I’ve never fished such a lot. Since then, I’ve been interested in this psychological phenomenon where our memories are glorified. I know brain science has already found out the structure. That is very simple: we make minor changes every time recalling memories. We recall good memories more frequently because feeling good. Consequently, good memories change more and better. That makes sense but is just boring (and difficult to be associated with our promotion), and so, let me share my own theory. Because our life is non-reproducible It’s like this. […]

    • December 1, 2020
    • April 20, 2022

    Do You Know How to Listen to Wood?

    Not good tellers but good listeners If you could only watch one movie for the rest of your life, what would you choose? It may sound stupid but is a very common question in Japan. People are asking each other like, if you could only eat it for the rest of your life, would it be curry or ramen? Anyway, it’s an easy question for me. “Stand by Me” is it, but today’s article is not about the movie itself but about the phrase in the original story by Stephen King. The phrase has since been a compass in my life, though I don’t remember it word by word. He wrote like: good stories disappear due to a lack of good listeners not tellers. Save good stories from going to the graves Have you ever discovered in a conversation a new side of even a long-standing friend? Surprised at his/her […]