One month has passed since I began my internship in Japan. Today I want to share with you about the gogorei (午後礼) at Prema, one of the things I found very special while working here. You may have already known about the chorei (朝礼), which is very common among Japanese companies. Chorei is a morning assembly where announcements and reports are made and mission statement of the company is repeated by the staff.
At our company, instead of a chorei, we have a meeting at 1 pm after the lunch break, and therefore it’s called the gogorei. When the bell rings at 1 pm, everybody in the office stands up and gathers around the small office. Normally it starts with someone sharing some new or good news about themselves or their families or company news they everybody to know. Then comes the unique part “Ippun can speak”, in which a staff is chosen randomly by draw and have to come up to make a speech within 1 minute. If sachou is there, he will say something to all of the staff. The gogorei ends with everybody saying out loud the greetings together, and each of them is repeated 3 times. “Ohayogozaimasu, Irasshaimase, Arigatou gozaimasu, Otsukaresamadesu”.
A gogorei often takes only 5-10 mins, but I can feel the positive effect it brings to the staff’s spirit and the atmosphere of the company. Sharing good news makes people smile, and this also creates a time when people feel free to share and get to know each other better. I enjoyed the gogorei so much because it helps inspire the revitalization of spirit, which in other words, blow away my sleepiness during the working day.
Even though I don’t often understand all of what is being said at the gogorei, I can still feel happiness and a sense of belonging as I stand together with everyone and say the greetings. Last week Sachou attended the gogorei, and I appreciated it when he tried to use simple Japanese and some English so that I could understand. I was so moved and inspired by his sharing and advice about how your purposes fuel your motivation, no matter what you are doing.
With the gogorei at Prema, we remind ourselves of why we are doing what we are doing, bring joy to our work and our lives. So that we can truly feel the happiness and deliver it to our customers.