In the UK, the end of the financial year brings fraught board meetings, weighty annual reports and a round-robin e-mail from the accounts department warning that the stationery budget will be cut unless employees stop over-using paperclips. In Japan, the same deadline apparently brings wild, alcohol-laden parties where new recruits are dressed up as naked women.
That’s not a missprint. Fancy-dress retailers in Tokyo have reported an overwhelming demand for nude suits that make wearers of either sex look like a “well-proportioned, topless woman”. It seems the suits have caught the public imagination since they were worn by a Japanese DJ’s backing singers on TV. Now they are the outfit of choice for initiation ceremonies to the country’s large corporations, taking place this month.
Guru can only shake his head in disbelief. If this is the state of recruitment practicesin an economic powerhouse that is meant to have us shaking in our boots as global competition hots up, then we might as well stop shaking, take our boots off and go down the boozer for a pint.