interview, japan studies

GODIVA Japan President & Kyudo Master

Jerome Chouchan Kyudo

Jérôme Chouchan is a remarkable man with an equal and balanced footing in two cultures. Not only the two cultures of his native France and his country of residence Japan, but also of the two cultures of Business and Kyudo.

Jérôme Chouchan is the President of GODIVA Chocolatier for Japan, South Korea, Southeast Asia, India, Australia and New Zealand. He has also practiced Kyudo in Japan for more than 25 years and holds the Instructor rank of Renshi and a 5th dan degree.

He is a top performer in both cultures, and perhaps this balanced footing is one of the reasons for his success. Decades of dedicated practice in Kyudo, the art of Japanese archery, brought about a subtle transformation in the way that he thought about and conducted business.

But the transformation in business results was anything but subtle. GODIVA’s sales in Japan doubled in a period of just five years, and Jérôme attributes it to the application of Kyudo principles in business.

How this happened is what his book is about:

Target: Business Wisdom from the Ancient Japanese Martial Art of Kyudo

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Jérôme came to iCLA as a guest speaker, and he shared the following wisdom with our students.

1) Competition is to improve yourself not to defeat others.

2) The process is more important then the goal.

3) Progress is the result of dedicated discipline over time, not pursuit of instant results.

These are the principles, and it is a rare person that can achieve them in one world, much less two.

Jérôme’s words were also an encouragement for us in the pursuit of the liberal arts. Perhaps the biggest lesson for us was that what we learn in one field can definitely apply to another, and that the pursuit of excellence delivers on its promise.

Jérôme kindly agreed to share his thoughts on Liberal Arts for us in an iCLA-produced video:

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