The iPhone is rapidly making Japan Apple’s bestselling region. In stark contrast, the business sector is still risk averse. It has been particularly slow to adopt in the financial services sector, with trading technology a prime example. So is the best path to adoption one of sustained innovation rather than the disruptive innovation that most Western-style technology represents?
Trust is a prominent pillar of business success in Japan. Trust dampens appetite for rapid modernisation with fear of risk and disruption to business prevailing. Business deals in Japan are won over time, no matter how good the technology is.
Sustained innovation offers an opportunity to build the relationship while proving the technology and its benefits. Disruptive innovation is perhaps best left to the consumer market. By implementing gradual changes to solutions, firms will incur less risk and can build trust with vendors without trying to overhaul the trading technology space. It may not be necessary for a major player to shock the system, like Apple has done in the consumer market. It would be more effective, and more suited to the business culture in Japan, for a gradual process to be applied.
It is a happy medium between maintaining the importance of trust in the Japanese business sector, whilst preventing the sector from falling behind on innovation. In just a few years we could witness this market develop and evolve, taking technology towards the 21st century, without a disruptive overhaul of the industry.