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The Americans and the Japanese decided to engage in a competitive boat race. Both teams practiced hard and long to reach their peak performance.
On the big day they felt ready. The Japanese won by a mile. Afterward, the American team was discouraged by the loss. Morale sagged. Corporate management decided that the reason for the crushing defeat had to be found, so a consulting firm was hired to investigate the problem and recommended corrective action.
The consultant's finding: The Japanese team had eight people rowing and one person steering; the American team had one person rowing and eight people steering.
After a year of study and millions spent analyzing the problem, the consultant firm concluded that too many people were steering and not enough were rowing on the American team.
So as race day neared again the following year, the American team's management structure was completely reorganized. The new structure: four steering managers, three area steering managers and a new performance review system for the person rowing the boat to provide work incentive.
The next year, the Japanese won by two miles. Humiliated, the American corporation laid off the rower for poor performance and gave the managers a bonus for discovering the problem."
The Polish were upset because of their bad reputation. A group of them got together and approached a conference of Americans, Germans, and Japanese and asked for help on this matter. An American replied, "You must do something so the world will respect you. The Japanese are known for their technology and the Germans are known for their resourcefulness. We Americans have had respect since we helped win the World War against the other two. See, you need to do something world-famous." A German added," Yes, he's right. Why don't you find a place in this world in need of a bridge that no one has dared build, build it, come back to us, and we will help publicize it."
With that, the Polish set off to build their bridge. They designed it and worked 6 months and finally completed it. They then went back to report it to the group. The bridge was a beautiful bridge but it had one flaw: it was erected in the middle of the Sahara Desert. An American said, "No, no. See, that is why you have your reputation. There is no need for a bridge in the middle of the desert. Now go and dismantle it, and find a more strategic spot to erect it."
The Polish returned to the conference in two weeks. One of the Japanese said, "Two weeks! It only took you two weeks to dismantle that bridge and build a new one??? That is amazing!!" To which a Polish man replied, "Well, not exactly. When we returned to the bridge we couldn't dismantle it because there were all these Italians fishing off it."
Japanese Banking Crisis
According to inside contacts, the Japanese banking crisis shows no signs of ameliorating. If anything, it's getting worse.
Following last week's news that Origami Bank had folded, we are hearing that Sumo Bank has gone belly up and Bonsai Bank plans to cut back some of its branches.
Karaoke Bank is up for sale and is (you guessed it!) going for a song.
Meanwhile, shares in Kamikaze Bank have nose-dived and 500 back-office staff at Karate Bank got the chop.
Analysts report that there is something fishy going on at Sushi Bank and staff there fear they may get a raw deal.
Made in Japan
There was a Japanese man who went to America for sightseeing.
On the last day, he hailed a cab and told the driver to drive to the airport.
During the journey, a Honda drove past the taxi. Thereupon, the man leaned out of the window excitedly and yelled, "Honda, very fast! Made in Japan!"
After a while, a Toyota sped past the taxi. Again, the Japanese man leaned out of the window and yelled, "Toyota, very fast! Made in Japan!"
And then a Mitsubishi sped past the taxi. For the third time, the Japanese leaned out of the window and yelled, "Mitsubishi, very fast! Made in Japan!"
The driver was a little angry, but he kept quiet. And this went on for quite a number of cars. Finally, the taxi came to the airport.
The fare was US$300. The Japanese exclaimed, "Wah... so expensive!"
There upon, the driver yelled back, "Meter, very fast! Made in Japan!"
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