The Day in the Life of an Overseas Business Consultant

The Day in the Life of an Overseas Business Consultant 

Are you interested in business consulting and want to learn more about the job? While it might seem a bit overwhelming, Shunya has been an overseas business consultant since June 2020 and was willing to share his experience. Shunya graduated Japanese University in 2017 and after doing some work as a submarine cable-system engineer, became an overseas business consultant currently working with partners in the United Kingdom, Australia, and South Korea. 

Give me a brief explanation of your job role and what your company does

As an overseas business consultant I do international logistics and trade with foreign partners. Since the imported goods can be used for a variety of things such as cyberattacking, we have to prepare tons of documents to allow importation from one country to another. A project we are currently working on is supporting and consulting the construction of floating wind farms in Japan. Even though we have prior experience with floating wind farms, there have been many technological advancements that have changed how they function and now we have invited professionals from the Netherlands and United Kingdom (UK) to assist us. My job is to essentially mediate Netherland and UK consultants with Japan’s construction company since Japan isn’t very familiar with ‘business English’. 

Another project our company currently works on is importing organic food and cosmetics from Australia and developing them into the Japan market. Australia has also been importing a variety of magnesium vitamins to Japan which has also interested our South Korea co-partner as well. 


What’s a typical day for you like?

So normal business hours for my job are 9 AM to 6 PM but since I do international logistics and trade, I have to be in contact with the primary factory which is located in Czech Republic, Europe. Since Japan is seven hours ahead, I have to manage my time accordingly. During normal business hours I do small jobs such as domestic tasks, that aren’t about international business. After normal business hours I make arrangements via emails and occasional phone calls and sometimes have biweekly meetings with clients until about 11 PM. Even though I work from morning to midnight, I control my time to skip some hours to make it efficient and manageable. For example, when I write an email I try to do it in a time frame of 10-15 minutes, if I don’t finish, I skip it and return to it later if it’s not an urgent email.  

What skills do you find to be vital in your industry? 

Honestly everything about my job is fairly new to me, when I face a new challenge such as setting up a homepage for a client I have to make a choice: either take the extra time to learn how to make a home page or hire a web designer to do it.

I think you need to be good at making decisions and being able to weigh the pros and cons on the situation. It is also important to learn things you’re not that familiar with such as some technical skills.  


What’s the best part of your job?

My division’s environment, because with a normal company sometimes you feel limited and have to stay in the same position that you entered at. However, within my company’s division I am able to explore other career opportunities without taking financial risk. My division’s director allows me to be flexible and explore other areas of interest which helps with my career growth. 

What advice do you have for someone new to the industry?

Make your own judgements when it comes to business consulting because it is very finance based. You have to also set a vision of how you want to help your client and set boundaries. You have to draw the line between helping your client and helping your company financially because no company can survive as a business without acting professionally. There may be things that bother you and you have to work through them so be prepared to make some tough decisions. 

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