Tomoya Nakamura in aikido gear close up
©Katsuo Sugano

Influencer Marketing

Expand your reach and engage with your target audience using this trending technique that blends celebrity endorsements with social media marketing.

Leading High Performing Remote Teams

How can leaders ensure that performance remains high in remote or hybrid-work environments?

Design Thinking

Learn the 5 phases of this problem-solving methodology and switch from technology-centered to user-centered thinking.


Learn what reciprocity is and how it can motivate people and boost sales.

Gantt Chart

Invented in the early 20th century, the Gantt Chart is one of the building blocks of modern project management. In this online course, you'll learn how this tool can be used effectively to monitor progress and achieve your team's goals.

Navigating Change Successfully

The working landscape is continually shifting and being disrupted, so how to employees maintain a sense of stability? Listen to CEO and president of Carl ZEISS Japan Stefan Sacre share his expertise on dealing with change in organizations and entire industries.

Halo Effect

The halo effect is often leveraged for marketing and promotion. But as a type of cognitive bias, it can also have a subconscious impact on decision-making in the workplace. Learn why and (how to overcome it) in this online course.

Anchoring and Framing

Want to increase your confidence during negotiations? Master the principles of anchoring and framing to take your negotiation skills to the next level.


Understanding ZOPA and BATNA will help you become a better negotiator, create more value, and feel more confident at the table.

Content Marketing

In this course, you’ll learn how compelling blogs, videos, podcasts, and other media can reach customers and drive sales. You’ll also learn steps for creating an effective content marketing plan, and some important ways to measure its impact and success.

Content marketing is a essential digital marketing strategy for companies looking to provide relevant and useful information to support your community and attract new customers.

Get started on your content marketing journey today.

Sustainable Innovation in Times of Disruption: Choices for a Better Society

There are opportunities for progress all around us. The key is to innovate on these opportunities sustainably.

To help identify most effective path forward, you'll need to gain a global perspective to these challenges in an open discussion. How can Japan and the world take action to create a more sustainable, innovative world? Where do you fit in?

It's time to find out.

Social Media & Digital Communications: Impact on Global Public Opinion

Social and digital media have dominated the communications industry for decades. But it's no secret that social media has the power to sway public opinion, and the way in which many companies use these platforms could be seen as manipulative.

What do companies need to be aware of when utilizing social and digital media? How can these mediums be used to better communicate strategically with the world?

Discover what top media and communications experts have to say.


Blockchain is one of the most captivating technologies out there. Learn what it is and how to make use of its opportunities in this short online course.

Mehrabian’s Rule

The 7-38-55 Rule, developed by Albert Mehrabian, suggests that effective communication relies less on the words we choose than on our tone of our voice, appearance, and body language. Learn how to put this theory to use for better communication in business.

Pareto Principle

Your time and resources are limited. Efficiency means learning to prioritize. The Pareto principle (also called the 80-20 rule) can help you identify the best way to use your time for maximum results.

Country Analysis Framework

Overseas expansion requires careful planning. The Country Analysis Framework can help you look beyond an industry-level analysis and reframe your view based on performance, strategy, and context. Try this short course to learn how it works.

SECI Model

The SECI model illustrates how knowledge is created and shared. Learn how to put it to use for best practices, and how the Japanese concept of “ba” fits in to broaden your perspective.

Johari Window Model

The Johari Window Model is a self-awareness framework that helps you better understand . . . you. Learn how its four quadrants can help you identify gaps between how you see yourself, and how others see you.

Sunk Costs

Wondering if you should continue an investment or look for something new? Sunk costs can have a powerful psychological impact on decision-making. Learn how to recognize them to ensure rational decisions.

CAGE Distance Framework

Want to expand overseas? The CAGE distance framework can help ensure you're constructing a solid global strategy in four areas: cultural, administrative, economic, and geographic. Learn how to leverage useful differences between countries, identify potential obstacles, and achieve global business success.


Groupthink refers to group pressure and the perception of consensus which together lead to ill-formed decisions—or even unnecessary risks. Learn to identify the warning signs of groupthink and apply countermeasures in this online course.

Deductive and Inductive Reasoning

Solving problems with the best results means using two types of thinking: deductive and inductive reasoning. In this online course, learn to form a broad premise, make observations, and form conclusions from different perspectives.

Critical Thinking: Hypothesis-Driven Thinking

Anyone can come up with a good idea. The real challenge is putting that idea into action. In this online course, explore how to form compelling, testable hypotheses and bring ideas to life in your own organization.

Critical Thinking: Structured Reasoning

Even a few simple techniques for logical decision making and persuasion can vastly improve your skills as a leader. Explore how critical thinking can help you evaluate complex business problems, reduce bias, and devise effective solutions.

Critical Thinking: Problem-Solving

Problem-solving is a central business skill, and yet it's the one many people struggle with most. This course will show you how to apply critical thinking techniques to common business examples, avoid misunderstandings, and get at the root of any problem.

How to Dream

Join globally renowned author and Columbia Business School professor Dr. Sheena Iyengar as she explains how to approach your dreams with a new perspective. Learn to reflect on what you long to accomplish and what stands in your way.

Logical Thinking

Logical thinking is at the heart of confident, persuasive decisions. This course will equip you with a five-point approach to more becoming a more logical thinker. Learn to classify ideas and distinguish fact from opinion.

Investing & Diversity: The Changing Faces of Venture Capitalists

Is the venture capital industry embracing diversity in investors? Watch global venture capitalists from around the world discuss the state of things and what needs to be done for a more inclusive future.

Servant Leadership

There's more to leadership than driving a team to profit. In fact, there's a word for looking beyond self-interest to prioritize individual growth: servant leadership. Try this course for a quick breakdown of what that is, how it works, and how it can lead to organizational success.

Organizational Behavior and Leadership

Ever wonder what makes a great leader? Whether your role requires leadership or not, understanding organizational behavior is useful for your career. This course from GLOBIS Unlimited can set you on your way.

Leadership vs. Management

Leadership and management are different skills, but today’s leaders must have both. Try out this course from GLOBIS Unlimited to understand the difference, as well as when and why each skill is necessary for motivation, communication, and value.

Strategy: Creating Value Inside Your Company

Have you ever wondered why certain companies are more successful than others? The answer is strategy: internal processes that control costs, allocate resources, and create value. This course from GLOBIS Unlimited can give you the tools you need for that strategic edge.

Strategy: Understanding the External Environment

To plan strategy on any level, you need to understand your company's external environment. In fact, your level of understanding can impact hiring, budgeting, marketing, or nearly any other part of the business world. Want to learn how to do all that? This course from GLOBIS Unlimited is the perfect first step!

Using Japanese Values to Thrive in Global Business

Japanese companies have unique cultural, communication, and operational challenges. But they also have values that have led to remarkable longevity. Check out this seminar to hear how these values help earn trust from overseas head offices and develop employees.

Turnaround Leadership: The Differences Between Japan and the West

What's the best way for leaders to communicate a shift in corporate strategy? How do you even know when it's time for such a change? This course explains how Japan might have one answer, Western companies another.

Conflict Management

Conflicts in the workplace are inevitable. But they can lead to positive outcomes if they’re managed well. Check out this online course for a two-step process that can help you manage conflict successfully.

Evernote Founder: How Tech Startups Can Break through in Japan

Can startup models from Hollywood and Silicon Valley succeed anywhere? Phil Libin, cofounder and CEO of startup incubator All Turtles, explains how AI can solve everyday problems to bring products to market.

Women Empowerment: Lessons from Cartier

How can women overcome gender inequality and reach their leadership goals? Cartier Japan CEO June Miyachi shares her secret in this special course from GLOBIS Unlimited.

Marketing: Reaching Your Target

Every company works hard to get its products into the hands of customers. Are you doing everything you can to compete? In this course, you’ll find a winning formula to turn a product idea into real sales. Follow along through the fundamentals of the marketing mix and see how companies successfully bring products to market.

Marketing Mix

Seeing good products into the hands of customers is no easy task. The marketing mix can help. It's a collection of strategies and tactics companies utilize to get customers to purchase their products or services, and is an essential part of the overall marketing process.

The Principles of Negotiation

With the proper skills and attitude, anyone can become a successful negotiator.  But first, you'll need to learn the basics to prepare for, assess, and respond to offers for the best results. GLOBIS Unlimited can help.

Negotiation: Creating Value

Want to create more shared value between yourself and your negotiation opponent? Discover how cognitive bias affects the judgment of others. Try this course from GLOBIS Unlimited to master the value of negotiation.

Finding Your Life Purpose with Ikigai

Ikigai can guide you in your quest for self-discovery. Listen to Japanese brain scientist Ken Mogi explain why and how.

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

Want to leverage Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs as a leader? Try this short course to see how the theory can be applied in practical work scenarios.

Confirmation Bias

We all subconsciously collect information that reinforces our preconceptions. It's natural . . . but it does lead to a kind of flawed decision-making called confirmation bias. To become more objective and impartial, check out this course from GLOBIS Unlimited!

An Investor's Lesson to Entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurs have the power to transform societies for the better. But how do you attract investors to start or grow a business? Or to sell one? Check out this seminar for the answers to these and more, straight from a master venture capitalist!

Managerial Accounting

Managerial accounting is a powerful way to measure progress, identify problems, and meet your goals. Check out this course to learn how data-backed decisions can help you run your business.

Finance Basics: 1

For a healthy mix of quantitative planning, evaluation, and management, you need solid decision-making. And finance is the secret sauce! Get the essentials of finance in this two-part course from GLOBIS Unlimited.

Basic Accounting: Financial Analysis

Want to compare your performance vs. a competitor? Or evaluate a potential vendor? Then you'll need to conduct a financial analysis. This course will teach you how to use three financial statements and evaluate financial performance in terms of profitability, efficiency, soundness, growth, and overall strength.

Career Anchors

What drives you to be good at your job?

Career anchors are based on your values, desires, motivations, and abilities. They are the immovable parts of your professional self-image that guide you throughout your career journey.

Try this short GLOBIS Unlimited course to identify which of the eight career anchors is yours!

Digital Marketing Psychology to Transform Your Business

How does digital marketing really differ from traditional marketing? How is social media changing things really? And what's going on in Asia?

Pyramid Structure

Having the pyramid structure in your communication toolkit can not only help you approach a problem, but convince others that your solution is valid. Break away from linear thinking and test your logical thinking with this course from GLOBIS Unlimited!

Leadership with Passion through Kokorozashi

The key ingredient to success? Passion.

Finding your kokorozashi will unify your passions and skills to create positive change in society. This GLOBIS Unlimited course will help you develop the values and lifelong goals you need to become a strong, passion-driven leader.

AI First Companies – Implementation and Impact

AI is changing the way companies operate. How do you structure teams to increase efficiency?

Technovate in the Era of Industry 4.0

Is Industry 4.0 is the next step of human evolution human civilization? Dr. Jorge Calvo seems to think so. Join him to learn how the past can help you set goals for an exciting future of digital innovation.

Technovate Thinking

Business leaders of tomorrow need to harness the power of technology and innovation. That means understanding algorithms and how they drive business results. Discover opportunities to make technology work for your competitive edge.

Product Life Cycle

Every product takes a natural course through the market—there's a how, when, and why customers adopt products at different stages. Check out this course from GLOBIS Unlimited to find out how a product you use every day is part of this cycle.

Logic Tree

Logical thinking is the most valuable asset any business professional can have. That's why logic trees are such a valuable tool—they can help you identify a problem, break it down, and build it back up to a solution.

MECE Principle

Using the MECE principle can help ensure you categorize without gaps or overlaps. Check out this course from GLOBIS Unlimited for a practical demonstration of how it works!

Japan has recently experienced a “yukata boom,” where one can often see couples wearing yukata at events such as summer fireworks shows. Yukata is a traditional form of clothing in Japan. Also, near the Tokyo (Kojimachi) Campus of GLOBIS University, one also has many opportunities to see people wearing kimonos, due to the proximity of the tea room of the Tokyo Omotesenke. So, then, when you think of young people dressed in kimonos and yukata, what kind of images come to mind?

The Sense of physical intuition in Japan

Recently, yukata have become fashionable, with brilliant print designs and more accessories and goods. However, I get the sense that something is out of place. If you observe closely, you can see that the way people physically stand while wearing yukata is not as beautiful as it could be.

People’s lifestyles have changed greatly since the days when Japanese wore kimonos and yukata. Now, most daily customs–clothing, diet, and living quarters–have become quite Westernized. With these changes, Japanese people’s own physical intuition—their sensory perception of bodily feelings–has begun to fade away.

Professor Takashi Saito of Meiji University, in his book “Taking Back Physical Intuition—the Revival of Koshi and Hara Culture” (original title “Shintai Kankaku wo Torimodosu—Koshi and Hara Bunka no Sairai”) published by NHK books, writes the following (translated by GLOBIS):

(Note: Koshi and hara are two Japanese terms roughly translating as the areas around the lower back and stomach, respectively. In addition, these words carry significant physical, spiritual, and, therefore, cultural meaning. Koshi and hara act as the physical and spiritual foundation for the body and mind, the platform on which the upper body rests upon. Finally, when Prof. Saito writes the hara character, he uses the“ground” and “body”radicals to emphasize the meaning that “one’s body is firmly rooted to the ground.”)

“Recently, the weakening sense of one’s existence has become a frequent problem. In order to feel that one truly exists here and now, the assistance of physical intuition, not just the psychological aspect, is necessary. In present-day Japan, how many people can say that their koshi is truly supporting their body on its axis?”

“If the traditional sense of Japanese ‘physical culture’ could be put into just one phrase, I would call it ‘Koshi -Hara culture.’ If you talk with people in their 80s and 90s, you will hear many phrases using ’koshi’ or ‘hara.’”

“‘Fix your koshi (Sit tight and settle down)’ and ‘Decide with your hara(gut)’ are basic vocabulary. I once heard a man in his 90s say, ‘In the past, those who were given responsibilities were the ones who had hara (guts) that were prepared (meaning one who is prepared for anything).’ These phrases using koshi and hara include a spiritual aspect, but, fundamentally, they are rooted in fact that there is physical intuition in the koshi and hara.”

The physical intuition to which Prof. Saito is alluding has continuously been passed down to today’s martial arts and performing arts, and has a very deep relation with Ki.

Cultivating Ki through physical intuition

At the first master’s training session I attended for the Aikido Club at my college alma mater, my instructor Sadateru Arikawa taught us how to stand and how to sit.

“Now, stand!” “Now, sit!” “Now, stand!” “Now, sit!”

Through this repetition, you can gradually develop physical intuition. Once you start to feel the gravitational of the earth, if you concentrate, you may be able to sense physical intuition in the area below your navel, called seikatanden in Japanese. If you begin to master this, you will be able to physically feel the Ki energy in your body.

Next is the shikko training. Shikko means to move back and forth with your knees in sitting form. (In ancient times of war, shikko was used in castles in front of the lord, where it was regarded impolite to stand before being permitted to do so.) If your seikatanden is not constantly at your center of gravity, you will lose your balance. If you have been able to achieve this central feeling, now you can train with a stick or wooden sword that gives a greater centrifugal force. Thus, physical intuition is one of the physical techniques that can be achieved through daily practice.

You may have heard of what is called the “natural position” or shizentai in Japanese. The natural position is a condition where your lower body is planted firmly on the ground in order to feel the earth’s gravity in your seikatanden, and your upper body gently rests on top of that. It is beautiful to see the posture of a person wearing a kimono who has established this natural position. Sakamoto Ryoma, whom I described in Volume 3 of this series, “Great Men at the End of the Edo Period and We who Live in This Era,” also has this beautiful posture.

It is said that traditional Japanese were able to strengthen their physical intuition (physical techniques) through their daily activities. Through okonai (deeds) such as cooking and housework, they were able to cultivate this kind of physical intuition.

I also believe that communities shared this sense of physical intuition, and because they did so, members were able to make reasonable ethical decisions and act collectively in the face of crisis.

Leveraging Ki in daily life

When you cultivate Ki through physical intuition, you can also learn to apply it in your daily business life. Here I want to introduce three examples of how I personally use Ki in business.

For about 5 years, I have been in charge of starting new businesses. Starting a new business involves a high degree of difficulty and uncertainty. In some cases, the businesses may not be blessed with much management attention and may not be given adequate resources compared with the core businesses of the company. Therefore, in order to expand the business in the midst of this difficulty, I, as a leader, must display a strong attitude and put forth a lot of energy. For this purpose, I must recognize my Ki (energy). If I notice that my Ki (energy) is low, in order to fill my energy, I re-connect with nature, spend time with my family or close friends, or enjoy art or a good book.

As a graduate school faculty member, I try to sense the movement of each student’s Ki in the classroom. I try to sense the Ki when students are thinking. For example, I think, “Although Mr. A hesitated to speak out, he really wanted to say something there. Therefore, next time when the class covers the same topic, I will encourage Mr. A to speak up.” Or, “because this is a discussion about strategy, many students have raised their hand. However, I will call on Ms. B, whose aura says she definitely has her unique comment to make on the topic.”

And, finally, I ask my body (koshi and hara) about things that I don’t understand logically. Does Ki accumulate more toward strategic direction Z or toward strategic direction X? Why is this? If so, for how much time will Ki continue to accumulate? Through Ki, I am often able to see these directions and make my decision. (For more information about this, please read Volume 2 of this column, “Perspectives of the Universe and of Humanity.”)

The third example contains a hint for Japanese management. For answers that do not arrive through deductive reasoning, we can believe in the power which arises through the important connection between employees (humans) and this kind of deep intuition. Furthermore, by uniting with management logic (such as strategy and PDCA), I believe that the Japanese management can perhaps outperform a management style that is rooted on pure economic logic.

By incorporating Ki into our daily activities, I hope that everyone’s business lives and activities become more fulfilling. Traditional Japanese cultivated Ki and brought Ki into their activities through physical intuition. Through our awareness of Ki, I believe that we can live happier and healthier.

Get monthly Insights

Sign up for our newsletter! Privacy Policy