The art of doing business in Japan is full of subtleties that must be respected if you are to gain the trust of your Japanese business partners.
- Step 1: Present your business card by holding it with both hands, with the Japanese side facing forward.
- Step 2: Place all the business cards that are given to you during a meeting in a case. Don't write notes on them, or worse yet, fidget with them during the meeting. Now you can start negotiating that contract.
- FACT: More than 12 million people -- about 10 percent of Japan's total population -- live in metropolitan Tokyo.
- TIP: Plan on handing out about 100 cards during a 1-week business trip.
- Step 3: Have plenty of business cards when you attend meetings. The cards should be printed in both Japanese and English.
- Step 4: Arrive a few minutes early for business meetings.
- Step 5: Wait for someone to direct you to your seat before a meeting starts. Seating positions in Japan are dictated by old customs, so it's best to remain standing until you know where you should sit.
- Step 6: Dress for success. Men should wear a dark blue suit with a white shirt and subdued tie between October and April, and a gray suit during the warmer months. Women should wear trouser suits or longer skirt suits with the same seasonal colors.