月別アーカイブ: 2004年1月

McDonald USA’s Ignorance

■Since McDonald’s in Japan was owned by the American parent company, they have ignored how McDonald’s has been loved by Japanese consumers since its first appearance in Ginza in 70’s. For Japanese people, McDonald’s was the symbol of Westernized dietary culture. McDonald’s was not just a place to eat effectively and efficiently but a place to enjoy an “American style” family life. This “American style” is not a real American life but pseudo-American style invented by Japanese management. We don’t need the real American life. We just wanted to enjoy the virtual American life. Now the American management completely destroys this cultural aspect and wrongly focuses on the efficiency. For example, now they open the shops in the suburbs earlier in the morning. This means they don’t know who are their customers. Their main customers in the suburbs are the families with the children younger than elementary school pupils because Japanese high school students tend to choose other burger shops. Another example, now I sometimes observe the stock-out. This means they don’t know the difference of logistics between the US and Japan. In addition, they stop their own broadcasting services. Before the buyout, their shops had a large LDC screen in which the original television programs are broadcasted endlessly. Of course, no customer watched carefully this “Mac Vision”. But it surely produced a comfortable atmosphere as if we watch TV at home. Now they stop “Mac Vision” and only the cheap background music is flowing out from the loudspeakers. I can understand the American management can save money by doing this. But we can’t feel at home any more in McDonald’s shops. Just looking at a few changes that happened recently, we can clearly understand the new American management of McDonald’s never knows their Japanese customers while they focus on their stakeholders. I can predict they are losing their Japanese customers year by year. Other burger shops, such as Lotteria, Mos Burger, First Kitchen, will take their place. The American management in Japanese companies tends to be too self-confident, too impatient and not able to adapt themselves to Japanese context.








When I was watching a TV program this morning, I have come up with one of the reasons why information security is so esoteric, mystic and far from rational thinking. Regarding the strange disease which recently enforced most of the Japanese carp farmers to give up their business (for Japanese the carp meat is expensive and special dish eaten only in limited celebratory occasions), one commentator said that it is important to clarify the definition of safety of carp meat. I’m not sure how to ensure the safety of carp meat, but we can say the same thing about information security. We should talk not only about the insecurity threats but also about the definition of what kind of status can be said secure. The information security threats are what don’t happen yet but what might happen in the future. So we can’t say by definition, “As long as these threats are considered, we are secure” because a new threat can happen at anytime. We can’t limit the scope of threats we must cope with in order to realize the security. All we can do is one of the followin two options. The first option is just to implement the generally accepted information security measures. The other option is to think about threat as many as possible by fully using your creativity and imagination and to widen the scope endlessly. Of course, if your company takes the latter option, it will be pretty favorable for the information security audit vendors because they can squeeze as much money as they like from your company. But if your company takes the first option, i.e. “just implement the generally accepted security measures without conducting any audit”, the vendors will feel sad.