Ikigai Business Is Sanpo-Yoshi Business part2: Making Your Business Small

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We have a visitor from Germany this week; eating home-made natto with fermented brown rice and miso soup. Omi-Hino-merchant’s sake adds the feeling of hygge.


In order to feel Ikigai in your business, it is better for your business to be Sanpo-Yoshi and that is because Sanpo-Yoshi includes the element of Seken-Yoshi, which means being socially friendly.


My definition of Seken-Yoshi in today’s world has the following 5 elements.

1, Making your business small

2, Making your business local

3, Making your business environmentally friendly

4, Making your business socially just

5, Making your business holistic


Let me explain the first element today: Making your business small


To create a business model that is going to make society happy, we need to look at our growth-oriented economic system, which seemed to be the core problem standing in the way.


There isn’t any more room left on earth for us to grow. Growing doesn’t mean discovering new frontiers anymore; it means taking a bigger share of the same pie. We need to find ways to circulate our wealth and resources.


In my opinion, circulation is the key in the business of 21st century. Another word, to be satisfied with our lot in life and don’t seek further growth. To set the limit to our growth so that we can share the pie with everybody else.


We can aim to earn enough money to be moderately comfortable, instead of aiming to be a millionaire. We have an expression called Hara Hachibunme in Japanese, which means 80% full. This phrase is used in eating, that we stop when our stomach is 80% full. It is good for our intestines. Taru Wo Shiru is another expression meaning know your limit. If the success model is to make a comfortable living, there is enough room for many people to succeed.


If you want to start a business, you can make it small and go de-franchising. In the 20th century, franchising became a popular business model. Business owners used to start with one store, then they would open another one in a different area, and they would repeat this until they ended up with a chain of stores across the country. However, they didn’t stop there; they then expanded their businesses to other countries and eventually wound up with chain stores all over the world.


The disadvantage of the franchising model of business is that it took away the opportunity for local people to succeed. For instance, companies expanded to other markets both within their country and in other countries. Once they set up their franchised businesses, the local businesses had to close down because they didn’t have the financial power to compete with the big companies. This made society unhappy.


Making your business small can actually be a blessing in disguise because you can then focus on making your store successful, which will help you live a more happy and comfortable life because you will have enough time to grow in other areas of your life. Good examples include improving your health, spirituality, and not forgetting you strengthening your relationships with your friends and families. In this way, you will be able to feel Ikigai in all areas of your life.



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