Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Firing and hiring in Japan

In Japan, the labor laws are quite protective of the employees and it can be really hard for a corporation to get rid of any unwanted empolyees assuming that no things such as blatant theft of company property, deliberate attempts to hurt the company or such has occurred. Basically, even the most incompetent employees are pretty well protected as long as the company is not in a harsh financial downturn in which they can cite money troubles to get rid of people.

So what do you do then, if you're in a management position and want to get rid of that annoying peon who keeps interrupting you, being in your face and just annoying you with stupid questions? You can't just straight up fire him/her because that could make you end up with plenty of problems in case they would decide to take it to court to sue the company for mistreatment.

You're getting worried? Now, relax, there is still a way that you can get rid of that annoying peon without breaking a sweat. You did the talk and expressed your wish for the person to leave the company, but he/she refuses to accept the package, probably knowing that he/she was lucky to get the job in the first place? Here's what you do! You see, the labor laws are pretty hard on firing people, but it allows for relocations without much limitations. That annoying guy who keeps sleeping in the meetings? That horrible girl who takes hours to send an e-mail?

Annoying guy who sleeps in meetings? - You send him off to man a new sales office in some asshole part of Japan, far away from his family with a minimal expense package giving him unreasonable sales targets that will allow you to lower his salary considerably when he fails to achieve the targets. Trust me, even if he would be stupid enough to accept in the first place, he'll leave soon enough and even if he doesn't you can take pleasure in the fact that you're making his life a living hell.

Horrible slow girl? - You allocate her from her finance position to one of handing out tea and counting the stock of papers from the warehouse, even if that is not to make her leave, at least she's out of your face for considerable time.

In all seriousness, during my time in business here in Japan I've seen some pretty horrid measures taking against people from management to ruthlessly make them leave the company and continously punishing them in case they refuse... We currently have things like this ongoing in my little company and it makes me somewhat sick since the person(s) on the receiving end actually don't deserve it since the only thing they've done is telling unwanted truth to management.

To tie it back to the picture illustrating this post, they need to wear an armor like that to suffer the abuse!

1 comment:

Prometheus said...

This is an interesting piece. I saw something like this first hand in my last company.

It was a small company and if they wanted to get rid of anybody the Syachou would give them the cold shoulder. He wouldnt speak to them or invite them out to eat, etc.

That sort of treatment at a big coporate company with 1000 people is not a big deal. But at a 20man company, it can make your life very uncomfortable.

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