Integrating pharmaceutical teams in Japan & the U.S.

Integrating pharmaceutical teams in Japan & the U.S.

Organizational changes that are difficult under any circumstances become more so when involving different national cultures.


A few years after acquiring a U.S. company and absorbing it as a subsidiary, a Japanese pharmaceutical company made the decision to globalize its R&D function in order to streamline internal processes and increase revenue. The company asked Aperian Global for guidance and expertise in integrating the U.S. and Japanese research teams.


After conducting stakeholder interviews in English and Japanese, Aperian Global leveraged its cultural expertise to facilitate the change management process in both the U.S. and Japan. Aperian’s multifaceted approach combined high-level strategy consulting with practical classroom learning.

To begin the process, Working with the U.S. and Working with Japan sessions were conducted in order to instill a critical mass of employees with cross-cultural awareness and skills. Team-building workshops, as well as one-on-one developmental coaching sessions, were conducted for the global integration team leaders. Short-term expatriate exchange assignments were arranged, with Aperian providing pre-departure and repatriation training. Ongoing cross-cultural and change management consulting by Aperian have further paved the way for a smooth merger of global R&D resources.


As a result of Aperian Global’s facilitation of the change management process, the Japan-based company has seen an increased sense of “one team” among its Japanese and U.S. employees. The company successfully launched a new organizational structure leveraging the integrated teams.

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