The Expat View “We have established an even more trusted working atmosphere between both locations”


Recently, Chiami Hori, Group Leader Legal & Intellectual Property Department Legal Section Legal 2G at ROHM Headquarters, has spent time at ROHM’s European Headquarters in Willich, Germany, as an expat. In our interview she reveals the highlights during her stay in Europe:


Chiami-san, what was your main mission during your time as an expat at ROHM’s European Headquarters?

Mainly, I aimed to practice more personal “face-to-face” communication with my European counterparts. My expectation was that this could lead to a more open exchange. In fact, it turned out that we learned a lot from each other, for example in terms of different communication styles with customers. Finally, I realized that my personal experience in Europe enhanced the collaboration between ROHM Japan and Europe after my return to our Headquarters. I shared all findings with my team in Japan and believe we have established an even more trusted working atmosphere between both locations.

Recently, Chiami Hori-san has spent time as an expat at ROHM's European Headquarters in Willich near Düsseldorf.

On top, I understood the needs of my European counterparts very well. Based on our personal exchange, I have now a very good feeling of how to reduce bureaucracy on their side to accelerate and streamline internal processes and work more effectively together.

What did you like best about Germany and Europe?

Europe is such a diverse continent: each country has its own history – which is so impressing. On top, I like the European mentality a lot: Japanese people are said to be kind, but I think that Europeans are also friendly and helpful. I have gained a lot of nice experiences not only at R/GmbH but also outside. For example, at first, it was difficult for me to understand the German train system and I made a lot of mistakes, for example in terms of taking wrong directions. In such case, somebody always spoke to me and let me know how to arrive at my destination.

In addition, I like how Europeans care about the environment. For example, in Japan, we do not have a system where we put empty bottles and refund some money. I think we should also introduce this in Japan.

What was your personal highlight during your time at ROHM?

Personally, I was glad I could positively contribute to a successfully negotiated contract between a European customer, ROHM Europe and ROHM Headquarters. Together, we clarified our counterproposals and the bottom lines that could be agreed upon. Negotiations with customers are still hard, but we made a lot of progress – also thanks to my counterpart Kemper-san’s great support. One European sales manager said to me: “Chiami-san, you are like a bridge between ROHM HQ and Europe and thanks to you, the negotiation with the customer proceeds. I would like you to stay here in Germany longer.” I did not do anything special and this is thanks to everyone. But, I am truly grateful for his comment, so this is my highlight!

During her time in Europe, Chiami-san not only met new colleagues but also made new friends.

On top, it was a pleasure to meet all European colleagues during the ROHM employee days when I learned more about my European colleagues’ project during the “Innovation and Excellence day” and when we had a great get-together during our company outing in Ruhrgebiet and Rheinland area.

How would you describe the typical ROHM spirit in Europe?

I had the impression that our European colleagues respect and collaborate with each other very well. I also enjoyed the working atmosphere, for example the quiet room “OASIS” as well as free tasty coffee and fruits. This way, the team stays energized sustainably.

Thank you very much for the interview, Chiami-san!


[Textbox] Chiami Hori

Chiami Hori joined ROHM Headquarters’ legal department in 2008. Now, she is a group leader with six subordinates. She is charge of reviewing contracts (especially English contracts), handling compliance hotlines, dealing with personal information as well as training and educating her team members.


Chiami-san’s Favorite Locations in Dusseldorf/Rheinland area and Europe:

1. St. Katharina and its square (Willich): “This is a beautiful church near my apartment. In the square, there is a small fountain whose color changes! In addition, there is a nice Spanish restaurant which I went to with my European colleagues. Not only the tapas but also deserts are very delicious. I recommend this restaurant!”

St. Katherina church and its square in Willich

2. Schloss Benrath: “This is a castle whose color is pink, which I think is very rare. In the castle, each room has different color, such as pink, green, yellow and white. Very beautiful!”

Together with her European counterpart Michael Kemper, Chiami-san visited Schloss Benrath.


Nicola Schäfer, Senior HR assistant, showed Chiami-san one of the Ruhrgebiet area’s historic places: The Villa Hügel in Essen.



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