I had the opportunity to attend a university in Japan thanks to a study abroad exchange program run by the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. In the four years I studied in Japan including the time I spent at graduate school, I fell in love with the Japanese culture and lifestyle and I felt strongly that I wanted to work in a Japanese company after I graduated. I’ve always had a personal interest in being fashionable, so I focused on cosmetics companies during my job hunt in order to put both my personal and practical interests together. I decided to join Noevir because the employees, both men and women, that I saw at the company recruiting fair and my interviews were all so fashionable and full of life.
I didn’t join the overseas department right away; first I did sales at a branch store in Japan and, under the instruction of my senior coworkers, learned the fundamentals of sales work and how to act professionally in the workplace. After that, I was transferred to Overseas Business Development where I mainly conducted sales support in China and trained overseas sales representatives on beauty and sales techniques. I slowly deepened my understanding of the Chinese market over the course of business trips I took about two times a month, and in my third year with the company, I was dispatched as an overseas resident officer to Noevir Shanghai, which is what I do now.
My main job is to expand sales of the cosmetics brands Noevir and Sana in the Chinese market. In order to do this smoothly in the vast market in China, I have to create and carry out product and sales strategy proposals as the brands’ representative. We only have a small team working here so we don’t have time to stop and think at our leisure while we work; we’re always running around on our toes. Also, in addition to sales, sometimes we have to deal with a multitude of other tasks such as human resources, legal, distribution and intellectual property matters.
When I became an overseas resident officer in my third year, the post of course came along with huge responsibility. Every day is a trial filled with study and work, but I feel like I’ve gained so much personal growth and experienced so many feelings of achievement within this environment. When I see sales grow as a result of a plan I implemented or a product display I made, I always strike a victory pose.
I’ve only been overseas for a little less than two years, but I feel really blessed that I’ve been able to build a network both within the industry and without as well as had the chance to be on the forefront of the company’s endeavors. There are times when I get tired out representing the company and the brand as a younger team member during negotiations with sales representatives, but there are so many opportunities to get advice from my senior coworkers that I feel this work has really lead to my personal growth.
We need to try to see through to what our business partners, be they sales representatives or customers, really need when conducting sales activities. The Chinese market is constantly shifting, as are laws, so we should be able to face our work with adaptability and speed.
We have to deal with these changes ourselves, so we always have to be calm and controlled... but sometimes I go on a rampage at work haha!
China is still developing rapidly, to the point that it feels like it’s a completely different country than it was before I went to study abroad in Japan. Even now, the cityscape changes by the day and laws are revised all the time. This is true of not only Shanghai, but also of the surrounding provincial towns. In 2016, I went on a total of twenty-two business trips and visited many of these provincial towns. It’s draining to keep going on business trips like this, but I keep telling myself that it’s like a vacation and that I’m getting closer to having visited all of the over thirty different provinces in China haha!
The national territory is expansive, so, depending on the area, the differences in culture, townscape and language can be huge. Thanks to my experiences living abroad, I am better able to see both the good and the problematic sides of China.
My goal is to become the overseas company president. For that purpose, I need to gain managerial experience by mastering not only sales, but also finances, legal work and general affairs. I have to work on building up what I’m lacking while keeping my eye on the position I’m aiming for.
I think the fact that I hold such an ambitious dream is thanks to the countless opportunities I’ve had to attain self-fulfillment here at Noevir.
|8:15||Arrive at work
my email and schedule as well as report to headquarters.
We confirm our goals and sales numbers.
|9:15||Working with sales representatives
The phone never stops ringing...
Sometimes I have to take a late lunch.
|12:45||Sales meetings and visitations|
I’m almost always talking when I’m on the job, so on my days off I try to spend my time as quietly as possible by doing things like painting. I also occasionally go on trips to the outskirts of Shanghai. When I have free time, I study graphic design and I’d like to get a certificate in it sometime soon.