What to know about Omotenashi, Japanese impressive customer service
– written by farkanyaro (Thai), translated by Victoria (English) and Hideki Usui (Japanese)
Many people when traveling to Japan will hear the welcome word ‘Irasshaimase’ when entering restaurants, shops or department stores. Did you know that this sentence is not just for greeting only! But this is part of the Japanese-style thoughtful service, known by the Japanese as ‘Omotenashi’. This word is widely known in Japan and is very important to the Japanese people doing the service business. If a place is known for having a great omotenashi it will attract a lot of customers. Today, let’s take a look at what we have to know about Omotenashi.
In Japan, the word Omotenashi is used instead of service. Omotenashi is a combination of Omote which means forward and Nashi which means none. It is giving service without expecting returns and doing it with care.
2.The better the service, the more stars
Did you know that Omotenashi is very important to the service industry? That the Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry of Japan had to issue a certification to service businesses throughout the country. The service is rated by a star which will start from 0 – 3 stars. The 3 stars, means that there is excellent customer service. A star rating like this is also beneficial for travelers, as tourists will know the quality of each store or hotel before visiting.
3. Impressive examples from Omotenashi
In addition to being greeted by an impressive sentence like Irasshaimase there are many other services that show Omotenashi, for example, during the rainy season, many shops tend to wrap plastic bags over paper bags for customers because they prevent the bags from getting wet, which will damage the products. In some hotels, the staff will open the car door for the guest while using the other hand, placing it over the car door to prevent the guest from hitting the top edge.
4. Omotenashi gain reputation during the Olympic conference
In the year 2013, the 2020 Summer Olympics qualifying conference was held in Buenos Aires Argentina. At the event, Japan representative Christel Takigawa spoke on stage about the advantages of Tokyo to be selected as the host of the Olympics. Saying that no matter what generation you are, where you come from, or where you live in Japan you will meet the spirit of Omotenashi. It is a Japanese culture that serves people with care, and in the end it turns out that Tokyo was chosen to host the 2020 Olympics.
Although the COVID situation makes Japan unable to hold the Olympics this year. But the spirit of serving with Omotenashi continues. And with this determination to provide equal service to everyone has impressed many people and made many people want to go back to Japan.
Dr. KRITINEE PONGTANNALERT from podcast Omotenashi EP 1 What is the spirit of Japanese service “omotenashi” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lh79gcqM4Vk
The Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry of Japan https://www.meti.go.jp/english/mobile/2019/20190521001en.html
Baramizi Group https://bit.ly/33F2YSD