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Opinion

Japan Inc should use COVID-19 to end excessive formality

Disruption to office life offers the chance to reset a deeply conservative culture

| Japan
Extreme formality runs deep in Japanese business culture, stifling employees' sense of ownership and suppressing innovation. Unexpectedly, the COVID-19 pandemic offers a chance to disrupt such staid traditions.   © Reuters

Nobuko Kobayashi is a partner with EY Strategy and Consulting Co., Ltd., Strategy and Transactions -- EY-Parthenon.

Amid the chaos caused by the first coronavirus spike last spring, some Japanese companies posed a technical yet urgent question: How can we make the boss's window on the conference screen larger so they can loom over their underlings?

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