Managing for Creativity in Japan Talking with Foreign Executives in Japan

Intelligent Consumers

Another thing that I tell people when they are talking to me about bringing their products over here and saying things like “everyone says it’ll really do well in Japan” is that Japanese people aren’t stupid. They’re not stupid consumers, they are actually really intelligent consumers. People who have never even been to Japan before say these things. If you think that your brand is good enough to bring over here, tell me why. It’s incredibly important for you to know the marketplace before you get carried away. Come and visit, check it out, see if it really is the place for you because Tokyo is a tough city to live in. It’s expensive, it’s crowded, is that really what you want?

That’s some more advice that I always give people when they say “ah I’d love to live in Japan” – do you REALLY? Or do you just want to live in Memoirs of a Geisha? Do you want a Western interpretation of what Japan is?…because it’s really not like that.