Training Expatriates for Managerial Assignments in Japan

by Ehud Harari, Yoram Zeira



The article explores the findings of a study on the problems associated with training of Western expatriates for managerial assignments in Japan. These findings suggest four implications. First, prospective expatriates should not be overwhelmed by the literature emphasizing the uniqueness of patterns of organizational behavior in Japan. Second, expatriates should be aware of the fact that it may be counterproductive to imitate patterns of organizational behavior prevalent in corporations. Third, the content of training for expatriates assigned to subsidiaries in Japan could be identical with that for assignments to industrialized Western countries. Lastly, contrary to the similarities in the four patterns of internal organizational behavior, other characteristics of the Japanese organizational environment pose enormous acculturation problems to newly arrived expatriates.

California Management Review

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Published at Berkeley Haas for more than sixty years, California Management Review seeks to share knowledge that challenges convention and shows a better way of doing business.

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