In 1912, Japan gave 3,000 cherry trees to the United States as a goodwill gesture. Every spring hundreds of thousands of people visit Washington D.C. to see these trees in bloom.
To celebrate the centennial of that generous gift, the U.S. Embassy of Japan has given additional trees to communities all around the U.S. And one of those trees is taking root right here in West Michigan.
The GULP program is designed to identify and develop future Japanese government and media leaders and build positive relationships. The fourth GULP delegation visited Grand Rapids last week, including the garden site.
Just as the original gift of trees was designed to foster friendship and positive relations between the two countries, this tree is a symbol of the relationships Amway Japan is growing with emerging Japanese media and government leaders through the GULP program. See more photos on our Amway Facebook page.
Our Vice President and Chief Sales Officer John Parker is the new Direct Selling Education Foundation’s (DSEF) Chairman of the Board.
He will guide the Foundation as it works with strategic partners that execute programs promoting ethical entrepreneurship and championing consumers’ rights. Some of these partners include American Council on Consumer Interests (ACCI), National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE), the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation Consumer Education & Protection Initiative and many more.
DSEF Executive Director Charlie Orr notes that John “knows and respects the distributor mindset as well as anybody in our industry.”
John has been with Amway for nearly 20 years, including stints as chief marketing officer and president of Amway Japan, so we know Orr is right. We also know that the DSEF is in good hands.
During a preview and personal tour of the future garden site, they shared their stories and suggestions for the first official tea ceremony with David Hooker, president and CEO at Frederik Meijer Gardens.
He’s intelligent, confident and charismatic. His skin is healthy and his wardrobe effortlessly cool. He’s who the ladies would call “the perfect guy.”
And now, he’s officially an ARTISTRY Man!
Amway Japan recently named Daisuke Fujii, 30, winner of the ARTISTRY Men Contest. He’ll serve as brand ambassador for ARTISTRY Men, the premium range of skincare products formulated to address the specific needs of men’s skin, namely hydration and oil-control. But first, he’ll take an all-expenses-paid trip for two to Stonehenge, among the world’s most famous iconic stone monuments, which inspired the packaging for the ARTISTRY Men collection.
From more than 3,000 entrants, Daisuke was selected by a panel of celebrity judges including actor Mikihisa Azuma, photographer Herbie Yamaguchi, model Alice Saito and Amway Japan President Mark Beiderwieden. Contestants were judged on style, intelligence, communication skills, sense of humor and good values. As brand ambassador, Daisuke will work to raise brand awareness for ARTISTRY Men while attracting Gen Y males in Japan.
And this week the Twitterverse was abuzz with word that American Idol season eight finalist Adam Lambert would perform at Amway Japan’s leadership seminar in Shanghai.
But one of the biggest stars in Amway Japan’s universe wasn’t in Tokyo or Shanghai, but right here at Amway World Headquarters.
Kaoru Nakajima, an Amway Founders Crown Ambassador with 50 Founders Achievement Award (FAA) points, visited Ada this week. Nakajima-san was greeted like a rock star by Amway employees who lined up to cheer him and his achievements.
Nakajima-san was a music composer when he was introduced to the Amway business, and was immediately inspired by the potential the opportunity offered. “I felt the Amway business was going to be my lifelong work,” he said in an interview a few years ago. “There is minimal risk and I was confident I’d be able to have a wonderful life with my family and friends.”
Paul Keep, managing editor of The Grand Rapids Press | Mlive, and Laurie Cirivello, publisher of the hyperlocal Rapidian site, shared how their respective media outlets have changed the ways they deliver news and share stories with readers. And Japanese editors offered ways they, too, are exploring new ways to report the news.
One way a Japanese newspaper connects with readers is through “bicycle journalists” whose beats are city streets and the people they meet. It’s similar to how The Rapidian uses citizen reporters to provide close-to-home coverage of people, places and things in Grand Rapids, Amway’s hometown.
The group also had a lively discussion about the future of print editions of newspapers. While many U.S. newspapers have migrated content online in response to declining print circulation, the Japanese journalists have a renewed commitment to provide print editions.
That’s because during the 3/11 earthquake and tsunami that devastated Japan, broadcast and online news sources were not available due to widespread power outages. But newspapers were able to produce print editions, which became a critical resource of information following the disaster.
One of the most prolific social media writers in the world of Amway is Ayami Hibino, a distributor in Japan. She has more than 10,400 followers on Twitter and blogs regularly about her travels, trials and tribulations.
Earlier this year, Hibino-San became a new Executive Diamond. This was no ordinary achievement, for Hibino-san is profoundly hearing impaired. She uses sign language to communicate with those she has sponsored into the business, many of whom are deaf.
As Amway Japan President John Parker told Amway World Headquarters employees today, Hibino-san is just one of many amazing stories, and just one sign of the hope that returned – swiftly and strongly – to this nation that has recently suffered so much.
Although her celebration gala was more silent than most, her achievement speaks volumes about success in Amway knowing no limitations.
If a picture is worth a thousand words, then the value of the new Amway One by One Campaign for Children video is incalculable.
The video shows some of the faces of the 8 million children in 50 countries and territories who have been helped by One by One since 2003.
You’ll also see some of the Amway distributors and employees who have given 2.3 million hours to help kids live, learn, play and achieve. And learn about programs ranging from playrooms in Russian hospitals to a sensory tour that helps visually impaired students explore nature in Japan.
For more information on these and other programs, read our Corporate Citizenship Report to see how we’re helping children from Australia to Venezuela, and many points in between.
The Lounge is a bustling space that provides an interactive setting for distributors to introduce our business and products to prospects. There’s a Beauty Space for one-on-one or small group Artistry consultations. The Lounge Space offers a setting for conversations about our business. And a Digital Showroom showcases Amway Japan’s brands and products.
This is the first “Amway Lounge” in Japan, a concept that if successful will be rolled out in other cities.
And judging by the lively crowds in Kanazawa, there’s little “lounging” happening there!
Disclaimer: The authors of these blogs are Amway employees. The opinions expressed here are not necessarily reviewed in advance by anyone but the individual author. These opinions do not necessarily reflect the view of Amway or any other person or company.