Failure in JapanJapan and the West have very different ideas of what constitutes failure.

When I sold Vanguard to Digital Garage in 2001, my Western friends called me up and told me

“I read about the acquisition. Congratulations! I know you have been working on it for a long time. Let’s get together and I’ll buy you a beer!”

However, without exception, my Japanese friends called me and said

“I read about the acquisition. I’m sorry to hear you lost control of your company. I know you have been working on it for a long time. Let’s get together and I’ll buy you a beer.”

I drank a lot of beer that month.

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