This paper intends to understand the overseas business expansion of a Japanese SME that is facilitated by strategic management of technical interns (TIs), a type of foreign migrant labor in Japan. We challenge the current prejudices and narrow view on the role of TIs by introducing a unique case wherein a rural SME utilized TIs as strategic human resources. Furthermore, we highlighted the positive influence of TIs on the gradual insiderization in foreign markets and development of new business opportunities.
This paper identifies the national factors related to the number of COVID-19 infections and COVID-19 deaths in each country using the CAGE framework in the international business field. Multiple regression analyses are conducted at multiple time points, with the number of COVID-19 infections and COVID-19 in each country as the dependent variables and cultural factors, administrative and political factors, geographic factors, and economic factors of each country as the independent variables. The analyses reveal the following four points: (1) The cultural, geographical, and economic factors are not significantly associated with the number of COVID-19 infections or deaths. (2) The Administrative and political factors (corruption, government information policy) are negatively associated with the number of COVID-19 infections. (3) None of the factors are associated with the number of COVID-19 deaths. (4) The significance of the correlation between independent and dependent variables changes with time.
It has been reported that the use of key phrases that all staff share a common understanding of is effective for integration inside an organization. At the Rakuwakai Otowa Hospital, however, integration failed due to the long-standing use of the terms “for the patient” and “patient first.” The staff had assigned different meanings depending on their profession to these terms based on which they had built successful track records for their profession. That experience acted as an inertia preventing changes in attitudes and behaviors and ended up accelerating individually optimal activities for each profession. It is not merely a matter of staff across units simply using the same key phrases; it is important to reduce the ambiguity of the key phrases through behavior.
Studies of the value stream mapping (VSM) in Western journals report that leveraging VSM as a lean tool results in performance improvements. However, in these articles, VSM is functioning as a tool for partial optimization, attempting to identify and resolve bottlenecks in individual functions and divisions, primarily in production activities. For that reason, the greater the degree to which VSM underpins success, the more it deviates from the original essence of lean production and flow management, promoting overall optimization by focusing on the flows across the value chain, and potentially leading to poorer performance in the overall value flows up to the customer.