News / 2019.11.15

Japanese rules and manners that foreigners don't know about are "Garbage separation" and "Business manners."

YOLO JAPAN Co., Ltd. (Representative Director: Taisuke Kaji, Tokyo Head Office: Minato-ku, Tokyo, known as "YOLO JAPAN"), which operates one of the largest media sites in Japan with a membership of more than 130,000 foreign residents from 226 countries, conducted a questionnaire survey on “Japanese rules and manners.”

※Survey period: August 13, 2019 - September 14, 2019 Answers: 513 people from 72 countries


[TOPICS]

1. Almost all foreigners living in Japan are learning about Japanese rules and manners

2. Rules and manners that you realized, "I need to know about" after coming to Japan

3. Thinking globally about Japanese rules and manners

4. A desire to learn Japanese rules and manners directly from Japanese people

1. Almost all foreigners living in Japan are learning about Japanese rules and manners

96% (490 people) of the survey respondents answered that they had studied or learned about Japanese rules and manners. About half of them (53%, 270 people) learned about them from Japanese acquaintances and friends, 51% (260 people) looked up Japanese rules and manners in their home country, and 47% (243 people) learned about them at work.
Japanese rules and manners that people looked up while in home countries ranks as follows. In 1st place, “greetings” (78%, 400 people), 2nd was “regarding time” (58%, 296 people), and 3rd was "garbage disposal" (54%, 279 people).
On the other hand, rules and manners that relatively few people knew about was “shopping” (19%, 99 people) such as bargaining, “smoking” (28%, 142 people), and “business manners” (32%, 164 people).
In addition, to the question “Where did you learn about Japanese rules?” Many answered “Japanese language schools” , and it turned out that Japanese language schools are a place to learn not only about the language ​​but also about real life.

2. Rules and manners that you realized, "I need to know about" after coming to Japan

60% (308 people) responded that they “had trouble because of not knowing" about rules and manners in Japan. The breakdown of this number is as follows: "Garbage disposal" (41%, 126 people) and "Business manners" (39%, 122 people). Of these, 41% (248 people) responded that they were "warned" or "penalized".
Regarding a specific example of "garbage disposal", respondents gave these examples:
“I didn't know there was a municipal garbage bag” (Australia, 40s, female)
“I didn't know that I shouldn't put out trash the night before” (USA, 50s, male)
“I didn't understand the difference between combustible and non-combustible waste” (Malaysia, 20s, female)
Some of those who said that they had familiarized themselves with the rules and manners in advance responded that it was still difficult for them to understand the detailed rules and differences between local governments.
Some examples regarding “business manners” are as follows:
"How to give business cards and where to sit at meetings" (UK, 30s, male)
"Greeting clients" (USA, 20s, male)
“How to introduce yourself in a business setting” (Australia, 20s, female), etc.
We learned that for a number of customs specific to Japan, many could only learn about them through experience and practice, as a result, they had to experience being reprimanded for not being familiar with the rules and manners.

3. Thinking globally about Japanese rules and manners

81% (417 people) answered that "there are good examples of Japanese rules and manners that should become the global standard." Of those, 29% (123 people) selected "garbage separation" stating that the custom of students cleaning at school was highly regarded.
Next, 19% (79 people) selected "manners pertaining to being on time," and 13% (53 people) selected "not taking phone calls or pictures on public transportation." We were able to see that there are many Japanese customs that people would like to adopt as the global standard.
On the other hand, with regard to Japanese rules and manners that people think "should be changed," out of 282 respondents, 18% (50 people) cited "business manners," especially in terms of the rigorous nature of hierarchical relationships that comes from compulsory attendance at drinking parties.
In addition, 7% (21 people) responded that it was necessary to review the rules and manners concerning gender. 16 respondents were female, and some examples of comments that were given are: "The trend that women should serve at dinner parties" (Germany, 20s, female), "There is no such thing as 'ladies first', and carrying luggage at inns is often left to women," (China, 20s, female), "Women tend not to be bosses" (Philippines, 30s, female). Among some comments from men, there was this one: "women are often forced to wear heels" (Ghana, 20s, male).

4. A desire to learn Japanese rules and manners directly from Japanese people

In response to the question “Do you want to learn about rules and manners in Japan?” 92% (470 people) answered "yes," and of them, 53% (249 people) said that they wanted to learn directly from Japanese people, and 40% (186 people) wanted to study from the Internet.
In order to reduce stress on both sides, in addition to creating opportunities for foreign residents to learn rules and manners from Japanese people, it is also necessary for Japanese people to learn and improve on rules and manners that they should review in the international community.

YOLO JAPAN intends to continue to expand its services while referring to the opinions obtained from questionnaires in order to provide better support for foreigners living in Japan.


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