27 11月 2012

数字だけを欲しがる外国人社長: Foreign Company Presidents Who Only Want To See Facts and Figures

      ■Foreign Company Presidents Who Only Want To See The Facts And Figures(数字だけを欲しがる外国人社長)

      One of the things about the foreign-owned companies in Japan is that, in general most company presidents who are sent from abroad to run them are usually on only 2-3 year, short-term contracts.(日本の外資系会社の一般的事項として、日本へ派遣される社長は2~3年の契約社長である場合が多い。)
      Because of this, they only have a short time to bring about some results and transform their achievements into another step up the ladder to their promotion, so they spend about the first two years getting results and the last year in submitting self-praising reports in order to win themselves seats as stockholders, and they end up neglecting to mediate the work in the company in Japan.(従って任期中に成果を出して、日本での実績を次の昇進のステップにすることを考えるため、実際は2年程度の結果を基に最後の1年は欧州の株主への、出世のための自画自賛のレポートの提出に追われてしまい、日本での社内まとめの仕事はおろそかになる。)
      As a result, they end up wanting only results, using powerful carrot and stick policies, going after facts and figures only, and they do not make investments based on a long-term view of the future of the company.(この結果、短期間でとにかく結果が欲しくなり、勢いアメとムチの政策になり、数字だけを追う事になり、長期的展望にたった投資が行われなくなる。)

      The company president's instructions become something like, "I don't want excuses; I want only results!", and no one thinks about the mid-term efforts or bothers to plant the seeds for future good results.(従って社長からの指示は「私は言い訳は要らない。結果だけが欲しい」となり、誰も途中の努力とか、数年後の成功のための種まき的仕事をしなくなる。)
      What ends up happening is that those people who think only about immediate results end up getting the carrot and, for the Japanese, it becomes a very difficult and restrictive place in which to work because human relations are fraught with friction and selfish opinions and ruled by the facts and figures.(最終的にどうなるかと言うと、単なる数字の結果だけを出した人がおいしいアメをもらうことになり、日本人側から見ると、数字がすべてを支配するギスギスした自己本意の人間関係が幅を利かす職場になってしまう。)

      Let us show you some concrete examples of the types of actual intercultural clashes that occur in such companies.(では実際に異文化がもろに衝突する会社では具体的にどんなことが起こるのか触れてみよう。)

      JA(Japanese): The company we delivered the goods to have complained that three out of the one hundred products we sent were defective, and the Japanese, who are sticklers for quality control, say that "a 3% rate of defectiveness is much too high." What should we do?(納品された当社の製品が100台中3台不良との事で品質管理にうるさい日本では、「この3%の不良率は高い」とのクレームがついていますがどうすれば良いでしょう?)

      NJ (Non-Japanese): Well then, if we send them 103 products and they are able to get their 100 good quality items, then we will be able to satisfy their demands and they will have no reason to complain.(それなら最初から103台を納品すれば、お客は100台の良品を手にできる。これで彼らの要求に対して100%応えることになるのだからこれで文句はなくなるだろう。)

      JA: The same company has also complained that the nameplates have not been placed in the same position.(同社から同時にネームプレートの取り付け位置が一定していない、とのクレームも来ています。)
      What shall we do about this?(これはどうしましょう?)

      NJ: The products we sent were all dispatched having met the specifications in the catalog, so there should be no problem here.(カタログ上の性能はクリアしているのだから何も問題はないはずだ。)
      The location of the nameplates is not guaranteed in the catalog, so even if they bring a suit against us, we are fully within our rights, so there is no need to worry.(ネームプレートの位置までカタログ上で保証している訳ではないから、訴訟されても十分訴訟に耐えられるから心配するな。)

      JA: Our customers would like to know more about the quality of our products and have requested that we send them not only someone from the management but also someone from the quality control department to explain things to them.(お客から製品の品質について説明を聞きたいので、営業だけでなく品質保証課(QC)の人も来社して、彼らに説明するように要請がありました。)
      What shall we do?(どうしましょう?)

      NJ: Our company has a budget system and the budgets for business trips for each department have already been determined.(当社は予算制で出張旅費は各課ですでに予算が決まっている。)
      If someone from quality control were sent on the advice of the managing department, how would anyone be able to determine whether the funds for that trip had been sent from management to the quality control department?(営業の都合でQCが出張するなら、その金が実際、営業課からQC課へ振り込まれたかを経理では一体どのように確認するのかね?)

      JA: Can't the departments in the same company accommodate each other even this much?(同じ社内でそれくらい相互の融通を効かすことができないでしょうか?)

      NJ: What kind of stupid thing is that to say?(何をばかなことを言っているのかね?)
      A person who cannot stick to the determined budget for his department in the first place has no business being in management.(そもそもすでに決定された自分の課の予算も守れない人間はマネージメント能力がないと見なすのだよ。)

      JA: !!??(!!??)

      NJ: Of course personnel expenses are also in the budget system, so the budget also limits the amount of overtime we can pay every month.(当然、人件費も予算制なのだ。だから毎月の残業代だって予算上、支払上限がある。)

      JA: But sometimes people have to do overtime out of necessity...(でも、必要に迫られて残業が必要な場合もあるのでは…)

      NJ: Japanese people sure do like to accumulate overtime pay, don't they?(本当に日本人は残業代稼ぎが好きですよね?)
      If you have to do overtime, then that means that you are not doing a good enough job of managing your work in the first place.(残業するという事は結局君の仕事の処理能力がないからだよ。

      JA: !!??(!!??)

      NJ: In the monthly meetings, most of your people do not say anything.(月例会議をやっても、日本人は何も発言しない人が多い。)
      If you don't have any opinions of your own, then you are not qualified to be a manager.(自分の意見を持たないようでは、マネージャの資格はない。)
      Such people need not attend the meetings from now on.(そんな人は今後会議に出る必要はない。)

      JA: There is a language barrier, and for Japanese people, it is very difficult to present an argument to the company president's suggestions in English.(言葉の問題もあり、社長の提案に英語で反対意見を言うのは日本人として難しいのです。)
      Besides that, the Japanese, through the process of nemawashi, had already come to a general agreement over the items on today's agenda anyway.(それに今日の議題について、日本人の間ではすでに根回しである程度結論が出ているのですが…)

      NJ: You don't need to go through the nemawashi process.(ネマワシは要らない。)
      A meeting is already designed to be a place where everyone can argue their own opinions and thereby come to a better conclusion.(相互に自分の意見を戦わせて、より良い結論を導き出すのが会議というものだ。)

      JA: Logically, this may be so, but if we did this in Japan, we would never come to any agreements...(論理的にはその通りなのですが、それを日本でやったら何もまとまらないのでは…)

      JA: If some of the staff is absent, then there is too much work for the people present to do.(もし部員に欠員ができたら、今の人数では仕事量が多過ぎて苦しいのですが。)

      NJ: Even if it is difficult, it is better that the work is being done.(苦しくても回っているのなら、それでよい。)
      Doesn't it show the people how easy they have had it up until now?(今までいかに楽をしていたかという証明ではないか?)
      It's better if you think of it as a good chance to decrease the budget and increase the effectiveness of the workers.(予算を減らして一人当たりの効率を高める良い機会と考えればよいではないか。)

      JA: The staff say they are going to quit, so who should we promote to be the next section chief?(スタッフも辞めると言っていますが、次は誰を部長へ引き上げましょうか?)

      NJ: It takes too much time to promote someone from the ranks and groom them for the position.(内部の人を引き上げて育てていると時間がかかる。)
      In order to bring about results during my term of office, I want you to go out and scout for another suitable section chief immediately.(私の任期中に結果を出すには、すぐにどこかから部長をスカウトしてこい。)

      JA: Won't people begin to see the limitations being put on their own advancement and lose sight of their incentives?(それでは社内での出世の限界が見えてしまい、社員の励みにならないのではありませんか?)

      NJ: The present subsection chief is only good enough to be a subsection chief, so he will retain that position.(今の係長は能力が係長どまりだから係長の地位に留まっているのだ。)
      The nationality of the workers and the managers are different after all.(現場のワーカーとマネージャーとは、しょせん人種が違うのだ。)
      You need to scout a person who is most suitable to be a section chief.(部長には部長にふさわしい人をスカウトすることが必要なのだ。)
      This is what a society with separate jobs in separate companies is all about.(それが職種別企業社会というものだ。)

      JA: Don't you have a lot of problems with that kind of personnel system?(そのような人事では問題が多いのでは?)

      NJ: As the company president, I try to interpret the decisions made at the shareholders meeting.(これは株主総会の決定事項を、社長として伝えようとしているのだ。)
      In Japan it's different.(日本とは違う。)
      There, no one can oppose the decisions made at the shareholders meetings.(あちらでは株主総会の決定事項には誰も逆らえないのだ。)

      JA: (silence)((沈黙))

      JA: If you give bonuses based on the amount of the proceeds to the management only, doesn't that upset the equilibrium with the other sections in the company?(営業だけ売り上げに比例してボーナスを出すのは、メーカーとしてほかの部門との兼合いでまずいのではないでしょうか?)

      NJ: Profit is proportional to the amount of the proceeds.(利益は売り上げに比例する。)
      In Japan, it's the Japanese management who increase the proceeds, so it's only natural that they can give a bonus to whichever section they believe made the most efforts.(日本で売り上げを伸ばすのは日本人の営業なのだから、努力した部門へボーナスを払うのは当然ではないか。)
      In our company, all the plans are perfected in the main branch in the West and are used all over the world.(当社の製品は、設計はすでに欧州で完璧に行われており、世界中に売られている。)
      There is a manual for the structure of the branch in Japan, and there will be no problems as long as we follow that framework.(日本での組み立ても、マニュアルは完成しており、これに従って組み立てれば何の問題もない。)
      The factory section does not need to make as much effort as the management, so it is clear that they are not worthy to be included in the assessment.(営業と比べれば工場部門は努力は要らないのだから評価に値しないのは明らかだ。)

      JA: With that kind of system, you will lose all feeling of unity among the company workers.(このようなシステムでは、社員の一体感がなくなってしまいます。)
      If the manufacturing section has to increase its production in order to increase the company's proceeds, then they have to make an effort, too, and so they should be assessed along the same lines as the management.(製造部門も、売り上げが増し生産台数が増えればそれなりの努力が必要なのだから、営業と同様に評価すべきではないですか。)

      NJ: Why do the Japanese always have to include everyone like that?(なぜ日本人はそんなに横並評価が好きなのか?)
      The most just and fair system is the one where the section that made the most effort receives the most reward.(努力した部門だけを評価する事こそ真の公正な評価システムではないのか。)

      JA: !!??(!!??)

      Whew! We can understand what they are saying theoretically, but it is difficult to accept all the cultural differences they have with the Japanese, based on different histories, religions, and moral views.(いやはや、理論的には彼らの言っていることは分かるのですが、なぜか受け入れ難い。というのは、やはり日本人とは異質な歴史、宗教、道徳観からくる文化の違いなのでしょうか。)
      Arguing like this every day would exhaust anyone.(毎日こんな議論をしていると、誰であろうと疲れてしまいます。)
      Understanding another culture really is a lot more difficult than most people think.(本当に異文化を理解するということは、人が思っているより大変ですね。)

      Translator: Ellen Iwasaki(訳 エレン・イワサキ)

    Llesi's Opinion:

       First of, this article shows the non-japanese person as selfish, thus only caring about himself and not others who work under him. And it would be best to not generalize all non-japanese managers who come to Japan like this, since I think there are some people who are not like that. 

       At the same time, based on this example, I do think this non-japanese person is being very unreasonable. This person doesn't care anything about how business is conducted in Japan, and doesn't care about cultural differences. In simple terms, this person is being ethnocentric. I would hate to have a manager like that. Probably I wouldn't even listen to this person and just continue with the work me and others have agreed on.

       I do know someone from my moms office who had a short period job in Japan, but I have no idea what he did. All I know is that the company provided him with the same living space he was accustomed to.

       But anyway, it is a huge part of this article that the non-japanese person really didn't care about cultural differences, but isn't it also how this company runs their managers? Do they really need a manager that's only gonna stay there for 3 years?

       So hopefully no one has to deal with such a situation with such a jackass. xD
    What do you think?

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