Japanese corporate title
|This article may be expanded with text translated from the corresponding article in the Japanese Wikipedia. (August 2011)|
Several Japanese corporate titles are roughly standardized across Japanese companies and organizations. Although there is variation from company to company, corporate titles within a company are always consistent. And the large companies in Japan generally follow the same outline. These titles are the formal titles that are used on business cards.
The head of the corporation has the title shacho, meaning company president, below whom are the fuku-shacho (vice president), senmu (senior executive vice-president or executive director), and jomu (junior executive vice president or managing director). The title kaicho (会長) translates to "chairman", but that is slightly misleading. The kaicho is not chairman of the board, but is, rather, a semi-retired president or company founder. It is unusual for a president to retire completely. But corporate rules, such as limits on the lengths of service or age limits, may force presidents to retire. When this happens, the president is usually given the title kaicho, a title that denotes a position with considerable power within the company, exercised through behind-the-scenes influence via the active president.
All of these titles so far are corporate titles for management positions. The top management group, comprising the kaicho, shacho, fuku-shacho, senmu, jomu, and some or all of the heads of department within the company are juyaku, or double-office holders. They have the additional title of torishimariyaku, which roughly corresponds to the Anglophone notion of a company director, and literally means "those who control". This additional title is added to the management title. Hence senmu torishimariyaku is the title of the senior executive managing director, jomu torishimariyaku is the title of a subordinate managing director.
Below the top management are bucho (general manager), the heads of departments (bu) within a company. Within departments a kacho (section chief) leads a section (ka). A jicho or bucho dairi is a deputy general manager, below a bucho; and a kacho dairi is a deputy section chief below a kacho. A kakaricho is a sub-section chief, a hancho a foreman, and a hirashain an ordinary employee.
- Arthur Murray Whitehill (1991). Japanese management: tradition and transition. Taylor & Francis. p. 113. ISBN 978-0-415-02253-8.
- Rochelle Kopp (2000). The rice-paper ceiling: breaking through Japanese corporate culture. Stone Bridge Press, Inc. p. 172. ISBN 978-1-880656-51-8.
- William Lazer and Midori Rynn (1990). "Japan". In Vishnu H. Kirpalani. International business handbook. Haworth series in international business 1. Routledge. p. 361. ISBN 978-0-86656-862-3.
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- John C. Condon (1984). With respect to the Japanese: a guide for Americans. Country orientation series 4. Intercultural Press. p. 86. ISBN 978-0-933662-49-0.
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