Team Dynamics and Diversity in Global Teams: Learnings from Danish Corporations in Tokyo

Aktivitet: Tale eller præsentationForedrag og mundtlige bidrag


This study provides a perspective of change with focus on Japanese globalization of mindset and business systems. Presently there is a strong drive in Japanese society and business towards change which is reinforced by Japanese economic reforms - Abenomics. This study presents the challenges and initiatives as encountered in seven multinational companies— with teams in focus—in the luxury products, medical pharmaceutical, and IT technology industries. Efforts have been made at all levels of these multinational corporations to remain competitive.

The Japanese are ubiquitously known for their management efficiency and competitiveness. This is due to the renowned lean production, total quality management (TQM) and quality circles. Japanese teamwork is one of the components of success, as is the attention to detail and an ingrained work philosophy of continuous improvement (kaizen). Japan excels in improvement of processes from the daily meticulous separation of trash to optimizing the time one takes to change trains from one platform to the other. This sophistication of organization has led to competitiveness in miniature and incremental innovation.

Meanwhile the Danes have been coined as being the happiest people in the world for consecutive years with advanced welfare and high levels of trust in systems and individuals. As part of the Danish mentality work-life balance is of utmost importance. The Danes respect their vacation and free time to refresh. On top of this, Danish employees demand their job to be meaningful and to be content, happy at their workplace - arbejsglæde. This contrast in values was observed already in the 1980s by the cross cultural specialist Gert Hofstede who concluded that the Danes work to live while the Japanese live to work. While his observation may still hold some truth, the present study shows the advantages of mixing the Japanese lean-ing with the Danish meaning.

The mutual attraction and learning dynamics between Danish and Japanese in business management teams is the storyline of the talk.
Periode20 mar. 2017
BegivenhedstitelViewing Each Other: Two Day Seminar Celebrating the 150 Anniversary of the Denmark-Japan Diplomatic Relations
PlaceringKøbenhavn, Danmark