Formal Business Meetings
Business meetings are to be conducted with formality. When you meet for business for the first time, you should introduce yourself by first giving your full name, the name of your company and what title you hold within the company. You are then introduced to those you are meeting with for business in Tokyo according to hierarchy. You should either bow or nod your head while shaking hands, as a symbolic gesture.
If entering a home, you should remove your shoes. This is also the case in some restaurants and offices. Business clothes should be conservative.
Business Card Etiquette
The exchange of business cards is important. Cards should be printed in English on one side and in Japanese on the other side. You should present your business card by using both hands with the Japanese side up. When accepting a business card from anyone you are meeting for business in Tokyo, make sure you accept it with both hands and say thank you. Also, take time to read the card rather than just placing it in your pocket or bag. If you are sitting, you should put the card on the table in front of you until the meeting has concluded. Also, do not write on any business cards you are given.
When doing business in Tokyo, business negotiations can be lengthy. Decisions are only reached when all of the states of the hierarchy have agreed. Meetings are typically conducted as a team with all members of the team having a say in the decision-making. The Japanese are very detail oriented, so you can expect many questions, including personal questions. This is a way of checking your integrity, character, and reliability.
Establishing a relationship that is mutually respectful is extremely important to the Japanese. There is some importance placed on the exchange of gifts as well. If you are invited to socialize after working hours, you should understand this is an honor and you should make an effort to attend at least for a short while.
Tokyo virtual phone numbers can be set up to forward to any mobile phone or landline number of your choosing, so that you don’t miss important calls when you are away from your office for any reason. It can sometimes be challenging to set up meetings with colleagues in other parts of the world, with different time zones presenting the greatest challenge. Obtaining Tokyo virtual phone numbers removes barriers such as this one and helps to ease the ability to communicate and push progress along in your business dealings.