If You Want to Be Rich, Don't Work.

by Akio Yamada


156 pages / November 2012 / 1,300 yen (w/o tax)

The most unconventional company in Japan reveals the happiest way to work!


Paid vacation of 140 days a year, no overtime, three years’ parental leave, self-reliance…known as the Japanese company with the most holidays, Mirai Industry comes up with unconventional regulations one after the other, yet it continues to be successful. The founder, Mr. Akio Yamada, who is recognized in Japan and abroad as an entrepreneur, has written what could very well be his definitive work. What’s behind these wild ideas, and what work philosophy has Mr. Yamada truly valued throughout his career? He teaches businessmen who are struggling with uncertainty and worry about how to steer clear of common sense in order to find a breakthrough in their circumstances.

From the table of contents

– Always think about doing things differently
– Think for yourself
– Be prouder of 100% failure than 0% risk
– What can make a crook work hard
– Have a lot of heavy losses if you want to be financially successful
– Why performance improved when the quotas were removed
– Good salesmen get clients on their side
– Shun negative thinking and embrace positive imaginations
– The Mirai Industry method is “Have fun, we’re paying.”
– The company will grow if the boss doesn’t work
– If you want something done, don’t order people around!
– Your ability doesn’t determine your capability

From the editor

The first time I met Mr. Yamada, I was surprised by his brisk manner–one that you wouldn’t expect from someone who is over 80 years old. Of course, building a company that attracts so much attention in only one lifetime is not something that an ordinary person can accomplish. In each of his enlightening words, I felt the self-confidence tempered by years of experience, as well as the extent of his capabilities.
It comes as no surprise that the self-professed “lover of theater” has an entire wall of the consulting room covered in posters of shows from all over the country: a veritable masterpiece.
Apparently, he personally climbs a stepladder almost every day to put up new flyers for shows. I urge you to read this book and feel a part of the power of Mr. Yamada.


Akio Yamada

Akio Yamada is a director and advisor at Mirai Industry. He was born in Shanghai in 1931. After graduating from Ogaki Junior High School in the old school system, he started working in the family business, Yamada Electric Factory. While he was doing that, he became absorbed in theater, and he became the chairperson of the Mirai Theatre Group.
In 1965, he established Mirai Industry with friends from the theater troupe, becoming the president and representative director. In 1991, the company was listed on the Nagoya Stock Exchange. He has been the director and senior advisor since 2000. He was awarded the Yellow Ribbon Medal in 1989, the Ogaki-shi Distinguished Service Award in 1999, and the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold, and Silver Rays in 2001.
No overtime; 19-day New Year holidays; Retirement at 70; All ideas get 500 yen–in the midst of establishing unconventional company rules one after the other, Mirai Industry has reached annual sales of 20 billion yen, and for more than 40 years since its establishment, the company has reported zero loss.
This track record and unique management methods have put Mirai Industry in the spotlight, and it has been featured on TV Tokyo’s “Cambria Kyoten”, The Most Valuable Companies in Japan–2 (Asa), and many other media outlets. Mr. Yamada has also written Super Stinginess (Toyo Keizai Inc.), The Strange Rules at the Company With the Happiest Employees in Japan (Pal), and The Company With the Most Motivated Employees in Japan (Chukei) among others.