A Window Into Japan’s Millennials and Boomers

Crystal Kadakia Posted by Crystal Kadakia, HR Consultant, Owner, Invati Consulting.


Generational challenges and Millennial themes are not 100% the same worldwide.

Generational challenges and Millennial themes are not 100% the same worldwide. Big surprise, right? Over the Thanksgiving holiday, I visited Tokyo, Japan and had a chance to observe the trends of an Eastern, “First World” developed nation. The insights gleaned were quite surprising: Gaming, Gaming and More Gaming In Japan, gaming is an age-independent phenomenon. We couldn’t go anywhere without running into arcades and gambling halls. On packed subways, we witnessed people of all ages playing games on their mobiles as a part of their daily commute. If there is anywhere to develop and test gaming for learning initiatives, it is Japan. Having an older generation so easily immersed in technology also significantly reduces the generation gap in Japan in comparison to other less technology-advanced countries.   Lack of Work/Life Balance Initiatives Employees work long days, after which there is an expectation to socialize by going to dinner or joining for some drinks with work colleagues. Throw in an often long commute and you have set the stage for one of the lowest work/life balance cultures in the developed nations. It would be interesting to understand how this impacts engagement, productivity, and creativity. As a Japanese female bluntly told me, “The Japanese aren’t creative. We […]