Knowing how to formally express yourself and observe proper etiquette is important for anyone conducting business in a foreign country. This helps to open avenues to more effective communications. This is very important, especially when planning for a business trip to Japan, where cultural elements like knowledge of Japanese phrases may play a huge part in decision-making and eventually on the success of a business relationship.
While you don’t have to become a walking dictionary of formal Japanese phrases to taste business success in Japan, the majority of the Japanese population actually adore foreigners who go that extra mile to learn a few formal Japanese greetings and business phrases. Generally, it’s a great ice-breaker and forges strong ties if you can make a courteous greeting in Japanese. So what are some of the formal Japanese phrases should you look to learn in Japanese language schools in Singapore before your upcoming business trip? When should you utter those phrases? Read on.
When you meet business clients or business executives in Japan, greetings are a crucial aspect of cultural etiquette. You will say ‘Ohayo gozaimasu’ meaning good morning, ‘‘Kombanwa’ meaning good evening or ‘Konnichiwa’ which is the Japanese equivalent of ‘Hi’ or ‘Hello’ and can be used at any time during the day.
‘Wakarimashita’ is the phrase to use to mean that you get the message and concur with it when speaking to your boss or clientele.
There are several variations of the phrase ‘Thank you’ that you will learn in a SkillsFuture approved Japanese language class. Often, the longer forms are more formal. When you want to say thank you in a business setting, stick to ‘Arigatou gozaimashita’ or ‘Arigatou gozaimasu’ when somebody does a favour for you or helps you in any way.
If you want to figuratively pat your employees on the back for a job well done, then you can say ‘Gokurosama’. Note that this phrase is only applied towards inferiors at the workplace. Other popular phrases include ‘Taihen yoku dekimashita’ and ‘Yoku Ganbattane!
Nice to meet you
‘Hajimemashite’ means ‘it’s nice to meet you. Another polite expression is ‘O-me ni kakarete ureshi desu’ which is the equivalent of ‘It’s a pleasure to meet you.’ Use these phrases to portray respect to the person you’re meeting. Learning this simple Japanese phrase in a japanese course in singapore will surely help you create a good impression on your Japanese business partners or clients.
Yoroshiku onegai itashimasu
When uttered by a subordinate to his or her boss, it implies ‘Thank you a lot’ or ‘I can’t wait to begin working with you.’ When spoken by a superior to his or her employees, it stands for ‘Thanks in advance for your support or teamwork.’ You can never go wrong with this phrase.
… to mooshimasu
A fitting translation to this phrase is ‘My name is…’ or ‘I’m called….’ You should use this phrase when introducing yourself in a business meeting or when attending formal meetings. It is highly formal and honorific. Equally, you can say ‘ Watashi wa (name) desu which stands for ‘My name is ( ? ).’
shoushou omachi kudasai
You should use this phrase on the phone to mean ‘A moment, please’ or ‘wait a minute’. When someone calls requesting to speak to your boss or subordinate, stick to this phrase to demonstrate respect to the caller. You can use this when talking to a client, business partner or a customer on the phone.
Tayori ni shimasu
If your business partner is going to assist you in carrying out a project, you can use this phrase to mean ‘I will be counting or depending on you.’ It’s a good phrase when an individual has agreed to support you.
Osaki ni Shitsurei Shimasu
In Japanese culture, it’s the norm for people to wait until the superiors have left a meeting so that they can also leave. Therefore, if you’re planning on leaving a meeting before it’s concluded or earlier than other attendees; you can employ this expression to declare yourself leaving. In doing so, you may well get away with leaving early without appearing rude.
Japanese is usually ranked among the most difficult languages to learn, due to its 3 different writing systems and the fact that verbs and phrases may change based on the level of politeness. If you wish to thrive in Japan, enrol for Singapore’s Japanese lessons before your next business trip.