Episode 48

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Published on:

26th Feb 2024

Hiring to help your business succeed in Japan with Kerry Ellis

We sit down with the insightful Kerry Ellis, a Senior Business Partner at Decipher Group in Christchurch, who has extensive experience in both New Zealand and Japan. Kerry shares fascinating stories and valuable insights about engaging with the Japanese market, understanding cultural differences, the importance of all kinds of diversity in business and how to successfully transition to work in Japan. We also delve into some fun “hanami” cherry blossom viewing stories and the protocols you want to make sure you know before you go!  Join us as we explore the intersection of business, culture, and diversity in this enriching conversation with Kerry Ellis.

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In this episode you’ll hear:

  • Catherine’s rather shocking first hanami experience
  • Some of the possibilities that might surprise you about coming to work in Japan, even with little or no Japanese 
  • Kerry’s number one gem of advice for cross-cultural communication
  • The importance of thought diversity for business and how New Zealanders can contribute to Japan

About Kerry 

Kerry is a Senior Partner at Decipher Group in Christchurch. He helps organisations to not only recruit top talent, but also connect business networks (with some focus on Japanese affiliations) across Japan and New Zealand.

Kerry became interested in Japan through living with homestay students in New Zealand through his High School years. He has had two different experiences in Japan about 10 years in length. He was initially in education whilst living in Shizuoka prefecture and the latter 10 years in recruitment in Tokyo. Ironically it was the earthquake in New Zealand that expedited Kerry’s return to Japan in 2011, despite the Tohoku earthquake in Japan in the same year.

With over 10 years of recruitment experience across Japan and New Zealand, Kerry has a deep understanding of the local and international talent markets and the challenges and opportunities they present.

Connect with Kerry

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/elliskerry1/

Website: https://www.deciphergroup.co.nz/

Jandals in Japan is brought to you by Catherine O’Connell Law and PodLaunch with Jayne


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About the Podcast

Jandals in Japan
Bringing The Land of the Long White Cloud to The Land of the Rising Sun
The best show about New Zealanders doing business in Japan, bringing The Land of the Long White Cloud to The Land of the Rising Sun
How do you build a brand in Japan and nurture a loyal customer base?
What do you need to have in your tool belt if you are thinking of coming to Japan to launch a business here?
Japan is often considered to be in the "too hard" basket but we are here to open up the black box of doing business in Japan.
We will share stories from successful Kiwis selling their products and services here in Japan.
They'll tell you their tips for success and pitfalls to avoid.
They'll share their challenges and what they did to overcome them.
They will tell you things you can't find in textbooks or on the internet.
We will also be sharing the latest intel and insights on Japan from our on-the-ground presence
And you'll hear some super business culture and other tips from us sprinkled throughout.
Grab a glass of sake and let's get into it.
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About your hosts

Jayne Nakata

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Jayne Nakata is a Southland girl who arrived in Japan in 2002, planning to stay just two years. 20 years later she is still living in Fukushima Prefecture with her Japanese husband and two children. When the triple disaster hit in 2011, Jayne made the commitment to stay in Fukushima and contribute to rebuilding the area. She is the host of the award winning podcast Transformations with Jayne, which is a favourite with international women living in Japan. She is also the double award winning podcast producer and manager for PodLaunch with Jayne.

Catherine O’Connell

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Born and bred in Christchurch, Catherine O'Connell landed in Japan in 2002, on a one year contract, and 20 years later she's planted her feet firmly in Japan. She built a wealth of business and cultural experience working at the coal face of brand-name Japanese corporates as in house legal counsel. Catherine took a leap of faith down the entrepreneurial route launching her own multi award-winning boutique law firm in Tokyo in 2018, being the first Kiwi and first foreign female to do so. She is Vice Chair of the Australian & New Zealand Chamber of Commerce in Japan and helps businesses thrive in the Japan market delivering business insights meshed with legal instincts. Catherine is also host of the award-winning Lawyer on Air Podcast.