Audience members enjoying lively panel discussions
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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

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!

I organize several conferences a year as part of managing a business school. Some last a day and are held at our main Tokyo campus; some run for three days and are held in more exotic places up and down the country. A few focus exclusively on business, but most cover a broad range of topics: international relations, regional security, politics, economics, culture, and even sports.

The key to a successful conference is to organize stimulating sessions that excite and engage the audience. I have compiled six simple “how to wow” tips for lively panel discussions. Here they are in brief:

  • Set timely themes and gifted speakers
  • Be original
  • Embrace diversity
  • Get the right moderators
  • Address issues from many sides
  • Eliminate distance

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Session Themes: Timely, with Top Speakers

First, an obvious enough point: you should always pick timely, relevant themes for your conference sessions. Here in Asia, a topic like security in the South China Sea—where China is energetically building artificial islands for military purposes—is a good example of what I mean. Globally, it could be a topic like non-state actors (such as ISIS) who represent a threat to everybody, or Greece, whose economic situation could throw the world economy into turmoil.

By itself, a timely topic is not enough; you need to have high-quality speakers on the panel too. Here my rule is strict: If you can’t get a good cross-section of experts, better to ditch the whole topic than settle for second-raters.

Originality Is the Priority: Everyone Loves a Contrarian

I’ve been attending the World Economic Forum at Davos for over a decade now. Time and again, I’ve noticed that the most popular speakers there are always the contrarians, the people who come out with a point of view that at first seems totally implausible—until it wins you over!

Web entrepreneur Joi Ito, a regular speakers at Davos, is quite brilliant at this. Something of a living paradox himself—he is, after all, a Tufts dropout who ended up as director of MIT’s world-famous Media Lab—he can be guaranteed to come up with original, provocative concepts.

Here are a couple of examples: first, BI and AI (“before internet” and “after internet,” Joi’s version of B.C. and A.D.), and second, antidisciplinary vs. interdisciplinary, which is all about going beyond traditional academic disciplines to take unconventional and risky approaches to problem-solving.

People never go to conferences to hear safe and familiar opinions. They go to hear bold, stimulating, new ideas. Make sure that your speakers have the capacity to startle and to charm.

Variety Is the Spice of Life: Curate Your Speakers

One of the best panel discussions I have ever attended was at Davos in 2005. The topic was Africa, and the six people on the panel were Bill Clinton, Bill Gates, President Thabo Mbeki of South Africa, Tony Blair, Bono, and President Olusegun Obasanjo of Nigeria.

Yes, they were all powerful men (Davos has gotten more proactive about gender balance in recent years), but they also represented an intriguing diversity of ethnicities, professions, generations, and life stories. I vividly remember Bono—something of an outlier as the only musician or campaigner in the group—interrupting to complain about his not liking “the tone of the discussion.”

The best way to get sparks flying is to bring together people with different backgrounds and perspectives. One personal rule of mine is to mix “thinkers” and “doers”—for example, academics and business people. That ensures that all discussions are firmly rooted in the real world.

While most of us would struggle to compete with Davos for star power, it’s always good to get a few big name speakers for your event. The big names boost the gravitas of the event and make attracting other good speakers easier.

Moderators Really Matter: Keep the Momentum High

Good moderators are like movie editors: although they are not the stars in front of the camera, the decisions they make about “cutting” between speakers determine the pace, energy, and success of your sessions. A good moderator must also have the guts to ask difficult questions and the tenacity not to let the panelists wriggle out of answering.

For our most important sessions, we always get Nik Gowing, the BBC World TV journalist, to moderate. Nik has an extraordinary ability to master a brief quickly, drive the discussion forward, keep all the speakers on topic, and involve the audience in the Q&A. Quite a juggling act!

Insights Lurk in Unlikely Places: Attack Ideas on Multiple Fronts

At conferences, you never know which session will produce the most valuable insights. My approach is to boost the odds by tackling our main theme from a wide variety of angles—cultural, political, technological, economical, etc.

For example, when we organized a conference on Japan’s post-earthquake economic revival, we had sessions on the standard “serious” subjects—monetary policy, post-Fukushima energy problems, etc.—but we also had sessions that dealt with “lightweight” subjects, such as Japanese street fashion and the Japanese startup scene. These two sessions yielded striking insights into the resilience, creativity, and positive thinking of the young Japanese who will have to revitalize the nation’s economy.

You never know where the good ideas are going to come from. Take a scattershot approach.

Up Close and Personal: Eliminate Distance

Where would you prefer to see the Rolling Stones perform—a small club or a 50,000-seater stadium? No contest. Obviously, a small club would be loads more fun. It’s the same thing for conferences: an intimate and relaxed atmosphere with the speakers and audience close to one another yields better results.

We always place our panelists on a low dais just a foot or so high and arrange the seats around them in a crescent pattern. Our staff even encourages everyone to sit close to the front to create a more direct energy between the speakers and audience.

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