Nemawashi (根回し) is a systematic formal consultation process used for consensus-building over company projects and business decisions. Nijikai 二次会 refers to small, intimate get-togethers after the formal event where candid opinions are offered.
In contrast to the official discussions and the Nemawashi process, more informal meetings may happen after the official talks are completed. These Nijikai gatherings, at restaurants or bars offer opportunities for candid even controversial opinions which lead to improved communication between the participants in subsequent meetings. These techniques may also be used by external business partners so that their relationship with their Japanese counterparts might progress from the second stage of known entity to the third stage of trusted ally.
Do you have any experiences to share of how to effectively participate at a Nijikai gathering?
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