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Japanese for the Workplace

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Want to learn Japanese? But can’t find enough time for it? Let me introduce the 10 simple ways to learn Japanese on the way to your workplace and in your office.

Here are 5 ways to learn on the way to the office:

1. Revise Your Japanese Notebook

It’s very important to write down new words and grammar in your notebook. Spend your commuting time on your Japanese studies and stick the new vocabulary and grammar in your brain. You can also be creative and try making your own sentences with those new words and grammar in your notebook. If you drive to your office and can’t take your eyes off the road, record your voice saying those new words and play it in your car. Try writing those words you hear in your brain so you can improve both listening and writing.

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Guessing is very important to survive in Japan and it’ll help you understand the context of a fast-talking conversation among natives.

2. Try Naming Everything You See in Japanese

This is one of the fun ways to learn Japanese while driving or riding on a train. Try saying everything you see from the window in Japanese. You can start with easy things, for example:
Sky = そら(sora), Cloud = くも(kumo), Buildings = ビル(biru)
If you find something that you can’t say in Japanese, write it down immediately or look it up in a dictionary. Name the same things on the next day again and see if you remember those new words you looked up on the previous day.

3. Plan What You Will Do in Japanese

This is another great way for those people with commuting time and to learn the business Japanese. Remember those tasks you’re planning to do on the day and see if you can describe them in Japanese. If you don’t know some words to describe, look them up in a dictionary at lunchtime and revise them the next day.

4. Listen to the News in Japanese

Most of the major broadcasts have their Podcasts available via their websites or YouTube channels. Some of the major broadcasts in Japan are below:
* ANN news
* FNN Prime Online
Download these Podcasts during your breakfast (or before bed for the news on the previous day) and play them while you’re on a train or driving. Try listening to it first and see how much you can understand. At your lunchtime or your break, try reading the sentences on the news or listening to the same article in English or your mother language. To try this, NHK has a variety of languages available. Then at home, listen to the same Podcast again and pay attention to the new words and phrases. At this point, you should be able to understand the context of the news as you already read it.

5. Read an Article in Japanese

This way might not be suitable for drivers but will be great for train or bus users. Pick an article from a Japanese website and read it during your commuting time. You can screenshot the page beforehand if you can’t secure a good Internet on a train/ bus. Try reading the article first and understand the context briefly. At the second reading, underline or note those new words or difficult phrases. Guess the meaning of those new
words based on the context and look them up in a dictionary when you have time. See if you guessed them correctly! Guessing is very important to survive in Japan and it’ll help you understand the context of a fast-talking conversation among natives.


Here are 5 ways to learn in the office:

1. Name All the Objects Around You

Do you know how to call things that you use in your office every day in Japanese? If you don’t, it’s time to learn them! Pay attention to what you have around you and look up in a dictionary if you have things that you can’t say in Japanese. It’s important to practice the pronunciations and repeat saying them over and over again. You’ll naturally increase your vocabulary once you try it on a regular basis.


2. Write Your Schedule in Japanese

You might get messed up if you write all your schedule in Japanese right after someone tells you an urgent task, I recommend you have two schedules – One is to write down in English (or your mother tongue) and another one to rewrite it in Japanese. This way you can learn how to describe your work tasks and it will help you when you need to talk about your job in Japanese.


You can also write a diary or even a personal schedule in Japanese. Surround yourself with the Japanese language! That’s the fastest (and the most reasonable) way to master a language.

3. Have a 'Japanese Day' With Your Workmate

Are any of your colleagues willing to learn Japanese? If you find one, let’s have a “Japanese Day” with them. This day is when you and your colleagues have to speak solely in Japanese. This way you can practice some conversations that you are likely to have if you work in Japan. You’ll be more motivated if you have someone else to study with, right?

4. Set the Default Language on Your PC or Your Phone to Japanese

If you want to learn those words used on PC, software, or phone callings, change the
language to Japanese if your device has the option. You can try changing it for just a few
hours first. I’m sure you will learn a lot of new vocabulary through those screens.

5. Chat With Japanese People

If you work at a global company with colleagues from all around the world, there might be a few Japanese workers. If they are native Japanese, it’s time to actually speak Japanese! However, there are not many chances to find Japanese in your office. If you can’t find one, visit a Japanese cafe or restaurant for your lunch. Try having a conversation with a Japanese worker there!


Hope this helps! If you’ve ever struggled with studying Japanese alone, Professor Julia is
always here to help you on Amphy! Hit me up if you need any help😉
Thank you very much for reading this article.😊

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