Different Management Styles in Asia: Comparison between Chinese, Korean and Japanese styles

time management

Chinese management


The Autonomy of Chinese Enterprises.

China is set on a course of management reforms, which will transform its industrial enterprises, and ultimately bring its economy closer to the international markets than at any time since the Liberation in 1949. It is, for example, embarking on a program of management education on an apparently unprecedented scale as a part of its ‘Four Modernization’s’ (of Agriculture, Industry, Science and technology and defense) policy. As a result of the post 1978 economic reforms, enterprises are now accountable for both profits and losses. This new strategy first started with ‘experimental’ industrial sites, after similar changes in the agriculture economy, and has been extended to state-owned firms in the urban sector. The effectiveness of such changes has, however, been limited by the lack of administrative and managerial capacities.

This part of the report hopes to shed light on the ways in which China is developing new organizational structures, training enterprise managers, adapting its labor markets, and changing its business culture in order to overcome the obstacles to economic development.


  1. Enterprise Responsibility: Managerial Decision making

These decisions relate to the main areas of activity normally found in an enterprise, namely marketing, production and contingent functions, purchasing, finance and investment, organization, R & D, employment and personnel.

First, the extent of decentralization was far from uniform among the different enterprises, and this raises the question of what might lie behind the variations.

Second, decentralization had been withheld in certain areas, including the pricing of products subject to quota plans approved by higher authorities, the determination of investment levels, the size of the employment establishment, and the level of basic salaries.

Third, decisions on internal organization, production and contingent functions, and most purchasing matters had now been decentralized. The progress of reform in the direction of enterprise responsibility was rather mixed.

Enterprise managers now had the authority to adjust their organization structures by altering the responsibilities of departments and creating new roles within them. But they still found themselves hemmed in by government regulations such as the one, which states that every managerial post must have a deputy, even though the specific situation may not warrant this. The ability of directors to reconstitute and integrate the typically large number of functional and staff departments seeking to preserve their standing and staffing have been supported by their counterparts in holding companies who are vary of allowing enterprise line managers to rationalize their dependencies.


  1. Enterprise Director Responsibility:

A major principle in the enterprise reform program is that the performance responsibility decentralized to enterprises will be placed upon their directors who therefore require the authority to carry it out. This is expressed by the so called ‘ director responsibility system’ which shifts enterprises leadership from party committees to directors. The unification of authority it implies is, however seen by the reformers to contrast with the earlier and relatively short-lived Soviet-style system of one-man management in that it is intended to incorporate a continuing role both for party and workers’ organs.

Overall, the enterprise director responsibility system is still in a state of evolution and is probably at present taken to its further extent in joint ventures. Although the system of leadership which is formally in operation undoubtedly affects the boundaries to managerial authority, local factors appear also to be influential. These include the experience and personality of the director and Party secretary, the network of supporting relationships and upward channels of influence they may command, and the mutual accommodation they reach accordingly.


Enterprise autonomy:

The economic reforms in China, so successful in the agriculture area, are now influencing the industrial sector at an accelerating pace. Almost every day China’s leaders exhort factory directors to take more responsibility and improve the performance of their enterprises. On 11 September 1985 the state council approved some new regulations to improve the vitality of large and medium sized enterprises. The fourteen regulations included more autonomy for state enterprises from municipal authorities and government departments and more decentralized management within the large enterprises.

Chinese industrial reforms are accelerating, but the amount of discernible change can be exaggerated. It is not a revolution but a structured period of evolution. The restrictions enforced by the centrally planned economy in labor management, marketing and purchasing is still, for the most part, hold firm.

The conceding of power to state enterprises is under way. It remains influenced, however, by the traditional subordination to higher authorities and the continued seller’s market in China.

In the sphere of labour management, the greatest changes surround dismissals. The lack of uniformity in the application of the appropriate regulations provides problems. The Chinese remain inexperienced in the usage of labor-related laws. It seems unlikely that companies will be able to cancel an individual contract unless they seriously misbehave.

Despite the various methods of recruitment, Chinese managers are still unable to freely select their staff. They are similarly limited in the matter of wage levels and bonuses. The latter issue is clouded by the number of different classifications for employees and the general expectation that all workers will receive a bonus.

Inevitably, in a sellers market, marketing remains under-developed. The prospects of a chaotic free-for-all are slim when one considers the Chinese idea of ‘friendly competition’ which involves rival companies acting more like satisfied bedfellows than highly charged competitors.

The broadening of choice cannot be easily integrated into the Chinese workplace. Companies generally have a limited choice of customers and a purchasing power restrained by state quotas and price control rather than commercial rationale. It will be some years before pricing and marketing will be used as commercial weapons.

Training revolution in Managerial Activities.

China has several bottlenecks in its economy: a major one is the lack of adequately trained human resources. A major restraint on technology transfer from the west is the shortage of professional managers at all levels, especially in market-related disciplines. Given the existing ‘Four Modernization’s’ of agriculture, industry, science and technology, and lastly defense), is the attempt to alleviate the shortage of trained managers, a ‘fifth’ Modernization?


Train the managers:

A major problem of technology transfer is whether to choose an external model. If a country chooses to ‘import’ a foreign institution, practice or behavior, it has to select an appropriate one for its level of economic or industrial development. Moreover, this importation has to fit its own cultural norms if it is to work well. If a country wants to change its way of running its economy, it has to look elsewhere for ideas as to how to prepare its managers for the new rules of the game and provide them with appropriate techniques to manage the new technology it imports.

The influence of the Soviet model on the Chinese management is clearly tempered by the negative experience of the period after the break with the Soviet Union in 1960. Today, there is no desire whatsoever to learn from the Soviet example among Chinese management educators.

In order to diffuse new management ideas and create a forum at both national and local levels for managers, a national association should be established. The Chinese Enterprise Management Association was therefore a vital step in both creating a new status for managers as well as stimulating a climate in which ‘management’ as a set of ideas could flourish. Its main goals are;

The modernization of production technology and that of management [as] indispensable and mutually promoting parts for modern industrial development. Modern industry needs a scientific management system. The purpose of Chinese Enterprise management Associate [CEMA] is to study and deal with problems in the system and methods of management capability and serve socialist modernization and construction through its activities.

It is clear that an expansion of on-the-job training for managers is inevitable, not only because of the economies involved but also because closely linking theory and practice is an essential part of the official philosophy of management training. There is considerable motivation for self-study, and this can be constructively channeled into distance-learning and adult educational channels at low cost to the economy.


Teaching the Chinese about Quality Circles:

A quality circle is small group of employees from the same work area who volunteer to meet regularly in paid time to identify, investigate, analyze and solve work-related problems. Voluntariness runs from the top to the bottom of a quality circle program. Employees may be somewhat pressured by managers or by peers to join a quality circle, but they are not coerced into joining. No financial inducements are offered for participating in quality circles and no one is penalized for not taking part.

The quality circles are also work-group-based, usually with the first line supervision as the leader. One of the primary aims of quality circles is to re-establish the essential role of frontline supervision. It is important that he assumes leadership of the circle and helps shape it through careful project selection and training. Previously the supervisor exercised a good measure of control over the workforce and had a fairly straightforward relationship with his supervisors. Today the supervisor finds himself further removed from the decision-making centers that directly affect shopfloor and departmental work. Much of the research that has been done on the superintendent is downward looking, from his position in the organization, focusing on his relationship with subordinates and on the effects of his behavior on workers’ performance. An alternative perspective, that is, viewing the supervisory role looking upwards – his relationship with higher management- reveals further chains in the role, touching on his authority and the priorities that are set for him in terms of work objectives. Against the background of these unsettling changes, quality circles can provide a simple clear method of asserting the foreman’s leadership at the grass roots level. He is not only Chairman of the Circle, but he assumes a training role as well with regard to Circle members.

Training requirements are critical to the successful quality circle. First the group leader undergoes a training course in problem-solving techniques, which he then teaches to the group members. Commonly used techniques include pareto analysis. In this technique the quality circles concentrate on the critical few problems rather than dissipate their energies on the many.

Other commonly used techniques include brainstorming and cause and effect diagrams. A cause and effect diagram is a technique used after brainstorming has identified a range of possible causes of a particular problem.

There are three main roles in a quality circle program: the co-ordinator, the facilitator and the circle leader. This structure and role definition appealed to the Chinese managers. While the sponsor of a quality circle program- the ‘champion’ who introduces it into the company because he believes in the idea and is prepared to promote it- can come from anywhere in the organization, the co-ordinator who volunteers to administer the program should be a senior manager who is well-respected in the company and who is at the center of the business. He should normally be a line manager rather than someone with a staff function. His role includes the following activities:

  • Being a focal point;
  • Administrating the program;
  • Dealing with communications;
  • Planning the future – making decisions about the program;
  • Upholding the core principles.

The facilitator tends to be a middle manager and can either come from the line or staff side of the business. The role includes the following activities:

  • Making group self sufficient
  • Training
  • Development
  • Having a ‘process’ focus, not a ‘task’ focus
  • Developing leaders
  • Confidence
  • Competence
  • Making it easy for others to
  • Understand
  • Support
  • ‘buy’ in
  • Oiling the wheels of the program.


The quality circle leader’s role encompasses the following activities:

  • trainer of quality circle members;
  • helps members feel comfortable in the meeting situation;
  • ensures that there is no elitism among quality circle members and that they stay in touch with the work group;
  • ensures that quality circles keep a problem-solving focus and stick to problems in the work group;
  • Makes it easy for others to co-operate with or join the quality circle.

The theory behind quality circles goes back over twenty-five years to Douglas McGregor’s seminal book, The Human Side of Enterprise 91960) and his enunciation of Theory X and Theory Y. theory Y has been adopted as the theory underpinning quality circles, first by the Japanese and then by problem-solving activities a natural outgrowth of their job interest. Their motivation is intrinsic and their appetite for responsibility can be impressive to managers accustomed to mere compliance with directives. They also demonstrate a great capacity to solve organizational problems.

The Development of Incentives in Work. A trade-off between Material and Immaterial benefits.


The Chinese communist party (CCP) has for a long time pursued a policy of combining both material and non-material incentives (or ‘moral encouragement’) to stimulate productivity towards growth. Material incentives have been developed according to the socialist principle of ‘from each according to his ability and to each according to his work’. In practice this means payment of a basic wage according to the national scales plus an incentive bonus, developed at plant level. Moral encouragement has relied on a variety of different campaigns designed to strengthen the political and ideological education of workers so that they recognize their moral obligations to work hard for the benefit of the nation since, under socialism, they are ‘the masters of the house’.

According to the ‘Decision of the Central Committee of the CCP on Reform of the Economic Structure’:

In the enterprises, the difference between the wages of various trades and jobs should be widened, so as to apply fully the principle of rewarding the diligent and good and punishing the lazy and bad and of giving more pay for more work and less pay for less work as well as to fully reflect the difference between mental and manual, complex and simple. Skilled and unskilled, and heavy and light work. In particular, it is necessary to change the present remuneration for mental work which is relatively low.


Non-Material Stimuli and Democratic Management:

The Chinese Communist Party’s ideology has traditionally stressed that all types of material incentive should be used hand-in-hand with moral encouragement (‘non-material stimuli’). In many ways, moral incentives have acted as a symbol of the extent to which the leadership believes economic problems are amenable to political solution. The seven principle types of moral encouragement campaigns used in China are summarized in the list below.

  1. Advanced Worker: an award to those workers, who have achieved good performance, judged by administrative units and trade unions at regular intervals.
  2. Model Worker: An award to those workers who achieve outstanding performance in their work in production, technological development, etc., by a domestic selection process including representatives from staff and workers. Model worker campaigns operate at different levels: national, provincial, municipal or country level, in descending order of prestige.
  3. Emulating, learning from, catching up with, helping and overtaking the advanced units: Objectives are to raise the initiative of cadres and workers; judging is criterial: the ‘five goods’ for cadres are good ideological work, good planning execution, good enterprise management, good welfare management and good attitudes of workers.
  4. Small Target (or ‘hundred point’) emulation: This emulation is judged or appraised periodically and, because enterprise award one hundred points for full implementation of targets.
  5. Emulation among workers of the same type of work: the focus is on sharing problems and solutions.
  6. Inter factory emulation: Emulation criteria are based on labor efficiency, profit, return on capital funds, etc.
  7. All-Excellent Industrial Project: This is awarded to good-quality projects where plans are fully implemented within a given time period.


The Chinese authority clearly have a high expectations of reformed state enterprises. By enlarging the decision making power of enterprises, they hope they have created a climate conducive to increasing the initiative and productivity of management and workers. At the level of the individual the outcomes are more obscure but clearly hinge on the appropriateness of the blend of material and non-material incentives.




Korean management

The concept of cultural distance:

When one looks at cross-cultural factors, perhaps what may be called cultural distance is important. For example, form the standpoint of cultural distance, Europe lies quite close to the United States. European languages are fairly closely related to English; European religions are practically the same; and indeed, the ancestors of many Americans came to the United States from Europe. While there are many aspects of American culture that differ from its European counterparts, such as the emphasis placed on tradition. European culture is quite understandable to the Americans. This is one of the reasons why American business has been relatively more successful in the European marketplace than in the Far East, which is culturally more distant from the United States than is Europe.

Korea and Taiwan are two newly industrializing economies and I would rate as being yet culturally further from the United States than Hong Kong and Singapore. Taiwan became a separate nation in 1949 and carries many of the traditions that are an integral part of the Chinese culture. Korea, although sovereign for a much longer period, is a homogenous society that, like Taiwan, believes strongly in Oriental culture. These two countries are heavily influenced by Confucianism and Buddhism- Christianity came into Korea only quite recently. However, Korea has been exposed to foreign influence on a multitude of occasions, and its effects still are visible today.


The business cultures of Korea:


  • Religious influence on business values:

At the risk of oversimplification- since there is much that differentiates Korea from Japan- I will give only a brief introductory description of religious influences here. On the surface, both countries have practices Confucianism and Buddhism. Shintoism is a uniquely Japanese religion, and needless to say, Korea has much more Christian influence today than Japan does.

The concept of family is relevant to the organizational philosophy of the Oriental firm and is probably the origin of the paternalistic aspects of many firms. The familial structure has a clear pecking order. The father is the head of the household, as the president of the company is to the firm. The first son is clearly in line; the people higher on the totem pole and higher in age deserve respect. Clearly, the value placed on experience and job titles reflects this tendency.

Another important aspect of Confucianism is the emphasis placed on effort. Working hard is valued immensely, meaning that the actual process of being industrious is as important as the result. Although there are many regions of the United States in which hard work is valued, my experience is that American firms tend to be much more results-oriented. In many Oriental firms, effort is a very important part of the performance-appraisal process, and poor results despite best effort draw certain sympathy from the organization. Obviously, there is much more to Confucianism, but this gives us a base from which to begin to consider some of the more specific differences between Korean and Japanese business practices.


  • Individualism; a natural phenomena:

To anyone who has worked with both Korean and Japanese businessmen, it is quite natural to believe that the Koreans tend to be more individualistic than the Japanese. Despite this appearance, one cannot honestly fault the Koreans for poor teamwork.

In Confucianism, the family-community occupies a very important place in the society. Both the Koreans and the Japanese are family-community oriented. But instability drives the Koreans to behave very differently in this regard. Imagine that just as one starts to make friends with people in one’s community, instability disorients the community. It isn’t surprising that in this type of climate one looks out for number one and the family. In addition, in the quest for a sense of belonging, Koreans tend to associate themselves with those who come form their home province, and those with whom they went to school. Thus a Korean organization is made up of a heterogeneous network of family, school, and home-province ties.

In Korea, job-hopping is more acceptable, but it can be afforded only by those who are skilled. For those who aren’t the cost is even higher than in Japan. While different countries have different conventions for counting unemployment the Japanese have been screaming that their unemployment rate has passed 3 percent. The official Korean unemployment rate is said to be around 4 percent, but in reality it is common knowledge that this number is too conservative. In Korea there are still some people who go to work to save face socially and with their families. They are grateful for the job they have and will suppress their personal inclinations to keep it. This is the glue that holds the top-down driven firms together despite the individuality of the people.


Unique Korean Skills.


  • Negotiating from a position of weakness:

Even in the west, many scholars have studied the phenomenon called the power of the weak negotiating party. Korea, I would say, has been a master at this, and I credit both the private and public sectors for this. Traditional wisdom says that in a negotiation, the side that has the least value to give will wind up with a bad final position. Empirically this is not always the case. The Koreans have, for example, walked into countless negotiations with little of apparent value and in the end, came out with a good deal.

What reinforces this is pure negotiating skill. One should not forget at the outset that the Koreans are very serious when they negotiate- it is a matter of executing well the very limited number of options available to them, and the cost is often survival. They will know or learn by rote to use every negotiating skill there is. Slow and infrequent concession patterns are a way of life in Korea, if only because they are so poor and their resources so limited. Companies from more affluent countries tend to yield here. The Koreans also know exceedingly well the value of information in a negotiation and will spare no effort to get critical information.


  • Ability to turn change to one’s favor:

Luck is inevitable in business, and that some who may not appear to be so bright or experienced will get ahead because of luck. In the long term, being successful in business requires that one be positioned to leverage luck when it strikes. The Koreans have been quite good at this.

Being positioned for luck requires that one have an organization that can shift directions and execute very rapidly. Large Japanese firms and some American firms have either become so bureaucratic or so consensus-driven that they watch as opportunity passes them by.

The Emotional factor.

When looking at Korean clothes or temples, one notices vibrant colors and outward beauty. In Japan the most valued form of beauty lies in subtlety that usually exists below the surface.

This issue of whether or not to overtly emotional has become a significant one in international relations. We hear countless times from American businesspeople that they feel uncomfortable because the Japanese often have little emotional reaction to proposals made to them. A Japanese businessperson who doesn’t display emotion is considered to be shrewd in the sense that he or she is hard to read, and composed in the sense that he or she is not biased and avoids coming to premature conclusion. Foreigners, on the other hand, tend to interpret this as clever game playing- a strategic use of the poker face.

In an outward manner, the Koreans in general tend to be fairly true to their emotions. While they tend to value composure and maturity as well, they seem to be more open to expressing reactions. This is probably one of the more important reasons why Western businesspeople are more comfortable dealing with the Koreans than the Japanese.


The Political factors.

Certain fundamental political factors have influenced the nature of the Korean people and industry.

The first of these is clearly controversial: the trade-off between authoritarianism and democracy. There is no doubt in anyone’s mind that freedom is desirable. However, in a country such as the United States, where freedom is an essential part of the value system, it is difficult if not taboo even to broach the subject of the costs of unlimited freedom in the industrial arena.

First and foremost, in order for a democratic nation to be effective, the populace must be well educated. When the Koreans were recovering from the Korean war, they simply were not in a situation in which the people could optimally decide what industrial trade-off were appropriate for the nation. And even if there had been representation at that time, it wouldn’t have been very competent.

Second, as is the case with Japan, a resource-poor-country must navigate through very narrow straits of tolerance in order even to have a chance to develop economically. This would mean precise and coordinated execution of a government policy at a given point in time and consistency in the implementation of that policy over a certain period of time. This is particularly important for a country like Korea, where the historical context has tended to be quite turbulent and uncoordinated endeavors would end in utter chaos.



Japanese management

The Environment.

Fate tends to play very interesting games in the way countries develop. The physical characteristics of Japan- a small island with little arable, inhabitable land and few natural resources relative to the United States- clearly had a profound impact on the culture that reinforced the Japanese development strategy. The ramifications of lingering effects of Japanese history, as contrasted with that of the United States, also played a significant role in determining the mind-set that country took on.

The Unites States is practically a continent by itself; Japan is an island, and Korea is a peninsula situated between two neighboring countries. The major differences between the United States and the other two nations in this regard are quite clear: sheer size and the availability of natural resources- points already excessively belabored. While South Korea is smaller than Japan in landmass, when both countries are compared to the United States, they are in the same ballpark. And they share the same problem of a lack of useful land and natural resources. These are the decisive factors that made the Korean government adopt many aspects of the economic development strategies of the Japanese.

Though it may be considered a subtlety, the difference between an island and a peninsula situated between two countries is in fact not so trivial. An island is physically quite impervious to attack and, as a result, the culture of neighboring nations tends not to be forced on a country such as Japan. During the course of its history, Japan had ample occasion to examine foreign cultures (through cultural emissaries) and choose what to acquire and adapt. By the same token, infiltration is something about which an insular nation tends to become very sensitive. In the United States, it was only after a number of major industries had been deeply penetrated by the Japanese that national attention started to focus on that issue. In Japan, Korean products currently have a minuscule presence.


Team Orientation: a core Attribute.

I once heard a Japanese academic remark: “ I would grudgingly admit that if you pit an excellent Korean against an excellent Japanese, the Korean would probably win. However, once you put a team of five together on both sides, I can guarantee you that the Japanese would win hands down.” In Japan, where in agricultural communities, a long period of stability fostered a kind of interdependence between different families that led to quite an efficient division of labor. This is the approximate origin of the Japanese concept of Mura (‘village’), and the village is sometimes more important than the family from the viewpoint that deviance cuts one off from an important network of dependencies. This partially explains why employee turnover rates are significantly higher in Korean enterprises to its Japanese counterparts.

In Japan, where a community tends to remain stable for a long period of time, people tend to understand the value, strengths, and weaknesses of others in the community.


Sprit versus Detail Orientation, Planning and Long Term Thinking.

In Japan where continuous progress is a way of life, things are never good enough- quality can get better, cost can be reduced further, product dimensions can be miniaturized more, and customer service can be improved upon.

One characteristic of the Japanese businessman is that he is uncompromisingly thorough. And part of the reason the Japanese have been able to be so thorough is again related to the relative stability of their society. In fact, when an oil crisis or the fluctuating dollar exchange rates require of Japanese firms repeated revision of their plans, they grumble, not realizing that the option to plan is a privilege.

The Japanese think very long term. Their long-term strategy is ten years out- most U.S. long-range plans are five years out. The Koreans plan five years or more, but they start executing before most of the questions are answered. This is partly due to the fact that they often follow plans that have already worked in Japan or in the West. But it also has something to do with the attitude that says, “Let’s get our act together and get this thing kicked off. As to what happens later, we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it.”


Maturity of commerce; Business an age-old phenomena in Japan.

It is interesting that the same Confucian value system held by the Japanese and the Korean has produced two fundamentally different outlooks. Japan has for centuries placed great value on commerce. The Japanese ability to transact business in a professional manner is the result of centuries of experience, not a talent that the Japanese developed in the last forty years.

The difference is apparent in the business practices of the two countries even today. For example, the Korean and Japanese treat their customers in fundamentally different ways. The Japanese believe in a concept called giri, which implies that the customer will be taken care of. So, in Japan, even after money has changed hands, a lot of firms and establishments continue to give the customer his or her money’s worth, thus fulfilling their giri. And if he or she seems dissatisfied, most trustworthy Japanese firms will try- within the boundaries of economic reasonability- to fulfil the customer’s desire. So, Japanese customer treatment is largely relationship-based.


Degrees of freedom given to bureaucrats and their capabilities.

The line of command runs from the minister to vice minister to bureau chiefs to section managers. However, structure is only one aspect of how organisations run. One manifestation of this is that in Japanese ministries, the only politically appointed persons are indeed the top man- the minister himself- and perhaps one other person who serves as a liaison to the political world. The rest of the bureaucrats are a career official, many of them veterans in industrial issues. Promotions within the management hierarchy are quite competitive and are generally on the basis of “up or out”. Therefore, while the minister has political power, all the knowledge power that is crucial to the implementation of a given policy is in the hands of the bureaucrats.


Competition and Co-operation.

Large Japanese companies and firms are fairly open about co-operation with multiple partners who can potentially compete with one another. For example, one trading company may use one subsidiary to co-operate with one U.S. firm, and another subsidiary to co-operate with a direct competitor of that U.S. firm.

Also, the relationships between large Japanese firms, even if they are competitors, is very interesting indeed. For example, company A in Japan could be company B, and could be a contract manufacturer for another product line. In each case, however, the purchaser is very careful that he doesn’t compromise his purchasing power through such arrangements. Thus Japanese firms rarely take sides naively.


Conclusion : A critical analysis of the three different Styles of management.


Chinese industrial reforms are accelerating, but the amount of discernible change can be exaggerated. It is not a revolution but a structured period of evolution. The restrictions enforced by the centrally planned economy in labor management, marketing and purchasing are still, for the most part, held firm. Despite the various methods of recruitment, Chinese managers are still unable to freely select their staff. They are similarly limited in the matter of wage levels and bonuses. The broadening of choice cannot be easily integrated into the Chinese workplace. Companies generally have a limited choice of customers and a purchasing power restrained by state quotas and price control rather than commercial rationale. It will be some years before pricing and marketing will be used as commercial weapons.


One should not forget at the outset that the Koreans are very serious when they negotiate- it is a matter of executing well the very limited number of options available to them, and the cost is often survival. They will know or learn by rote to use every negotiating skill there is.

In an outward manner, the Koreans in general tend to be fairly true to their emotions. While they tend to value composure and maturity as well, they seem to be more open to expressing reactions. This is probably one of the more important reasons why Western businesspeople are more comfortable dealing with the Koreans than the Japanese.


In Japan where continuous progress is a way of life, things are never good enough- quality can get better, cost can be reduced further, product dimensions can be miniaturized more, and customer service can be improved upon.

The Japanese think very long term. Their long-term strategy is ten years out- most U.S. long-range plans are five years out. The Japanese do not indulge into the implementation of the plans, unless first and foremost, all the questions regarding the plan are answered. This phenomenon is completely contra to the Korean management practices, where they rush into implementing the plan, with a view that the problems that will emerge later will be taken care of then. This is one of the reasons why the defect rate in the Korean manufacturing firms is considerably higher than in Japanese firms.



Judgement; The survivor in the times to come.


After considering the three different types of management styles, it is quite evident that the Japanese style of management is the most efficient one for the log term growth and development of the nation. Also in the times to come it is not the quantity of the production that is going to determine the survival of the companies rather it is going to be the quality of their products, and the relative satisfaction of the employees with their management.

Japanese through their superb human resource policies have harnessed the energies of the workers and have used that to not only to their advantage but also for the betterment of their workers. This has led to the betterment of the entire nation.
The Chinese are in the process of evolution and it will take some time before they stand in line with Japan. The Korean approach is not a very long term oriented and it is very likely that if faced by a difficult situation they might become very vulnerable. There are a few distinct loopholes in their management practises and unless they take of them and change their strategy it is very likely that they might lose out in the war of the giants.






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