Japanese Multinationals Abroad: Individual and Organizational Learning

Japanese Multinationals Abroad: Individual and Organizational Learning

Japanese Multinationals Abroad: Individual and Organizational Learning

Japanese Multinationals Abroad: Individual and Organizational Learning

Synopsis

This book brings together research on the spread of Japanese multinational firms around the world. The authors' research includes firms operating in the United States, Germany, Spain, Mexico, Italy, as well as countries in Southeast Asia. The continuing success of these firms provides a model for other countries and firms to understand and emulate. The contributors in this book demonstrate how Japanese multinationals manage the people in their overseas operations and have wide-ranging implications for multinational performance as well as the performance of the local economies in which they operate. It is a learning experience for the Japanese managers when they find a cultural conflict with local workers and have to find ways to overcome this conflict in order for the local affiliate to succeed. Finally, the authors draw conclusions that can be applied to multinational firms in other countries that are expanding into different cultures.

Excerpt

This book is the culmination of the first 10 years of a journey that has taken us across continents and time zones more times than we can count in an effort to better understand the nature of Japanese management abroad and the processes of organizational and individual learning. From our perspective as editors, this book is an important milestone in that journey because it brings together, in one volume, new and important empirical contributions from authors whom we have come to know and respect as experts in the field of Japanese management overseas.

The first step in realizing the vision for this book was afforded at the Annual Conference of the Association of Japanese Business Studies, held in Ann Arbor, Michigan in June 1995. We invited all the authors to submit original papers to the ajbs conference and organized a two-day discussion seminar to discuss the individual papers and the volume as a whole immediately before the conference. Each author provided valuable feedback to the other chapter writers and participated in discussions that will long be a highlight of our own individual and collective learning.

This book could not have been possible without the generous cooperation and valuable insights from the hundreds of managers interviewed for the research reported in this volume. Because their identities must remain confidential, we cannot thank them by name but want them to know that our gratitude is enormous.

We would like to express our appreciation to the editors and staff at Oxford University Press. in particular, Herb Addison, Vice President and Executive Editor, Tamara Destine, Editorial Assistant, and Robert Milks, Production Editor, all showed the highest levels of professionalism, as well as patience, in every stage of the publication process.

Finally, we would like to thank our families. Allan would like to thank his wife, Diane, for her unfailing support and encouragement. His four children, Kyle, Allyson, Jared, and Campbell, also warrant heartfelt gratitude for their willingness to forgive him the missed birthday, school concert, or camping trip while he was on the road in pursuit of "one more company, one more interview." Finally, he dedicates this book to his father, A. Dee Bird, who taught him that ideas matter.

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