Interview of Ha Thanh Tung
Ha Thanh Tung
Vietnam, 24 years old
Position: Sales・Digital Marketer
Company: JP MOBILE CO., LTD. (ジェイピーモバイル株式会社)
(Joined: 2017-09 through introduction of Jellyfish)
①What interested you the most before you came to Japan? ②What's different between your country and Japan?
It was not that special at first. After graduating from high school, I just wanted to study abroad. Pretty stubborn was I that I didn’t even bother taking the national university entrance exam. I spent my time doing freelance translation work and reading. I read quite a lot of books in those few months after graduation from high school. Later I applied for Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University. I got the acceptance letter with full scholarship offer and decided to go for it.
Japan is totally different from my country - Vietnam. I love Japan because it’s very clean and life quality is quite good. What I didn’t like when I first came here is the fact that Japanese people act too politely. People even bow to each other to show their appreciation, which I have never seen in Vietnam. Back in my country, people are more relaxed and straightforward. We are probably less tactful compared to Japanese when it comes to daily association, which, I am sure, is a major source of headache for many foreigners in Japan. Actually, I did attempt to dropout of college once in my junior year in college because I hated living in the countryside of Japan, which is more than just boring. I bought an one-way ticket to Vietnam but the moment I was about to board the plane, I reminded myself “When you feel like quitting, remember why you started in the first place”, and I went back and stayed.
②How did you search for jobs? How were those interviews?
After graduation from college, I moved right to Tokyo without giving a second thought. With roughly 50,000 yen left in my pocket, no friends, no acquaintance, I finally found myself a place in a cheap guesthouse and everything started there.
First and foremost, searching for your first job is not an overnight process. It takes time. Knowing that, I found myself a part-time job at 7/11 so that I would have enough money to pay for the rent and food during the job hunting period.
At first, I didn’t use recruit agencies first and just applied by myself. I submitted CVs to different companies and went to different job orientations. I applied for 10~20 companies at that time but the results were not beautiful. I got into the second round of a few companies and went to interviews but got rejected. Young and driven, I wanted to land a sales job at that time. However, to be a sales person in Japan, you have to be super good at Japanese and my Japanese was not that good then. In the interviews, the interviewers asked me a lot of difficult questions which I couldn’t answer properly and I failed a lot of them.
I think I also made some mistakes for only applying for big companies at that time. I suppose big traditional Japanese companies prefer newgrads whose qualities of those easily domesticated. I am quite the oppisite to that because I’m more of a venture company person. Matter of factly, I hate rules.
③How did you know about Jellyfish? How was our consultant?
I saw one of your job postings on some job website and applied for those positions. Then Cuc-san (Jellyfish Consultant) contacted me for further information. She was a bit strict at first but I received a lot of good advice from her such that I shouldn’t lie on my resume as eventually people will find out about it. Be honest with yourself, be honest with other people, be prepared with how you are going to sell yourself in the interview and I think you will better your chance of landing a job that you love.
④ Why did you take your current job? Is there anything interesting in this job? What do you do right now? What do you want to do in the future?
I got the offer from the company and I thought my window of opportunity did not extend for too long so I decided very quickly to accept that job. I’m not very much of an overthinker. Many times I just make my decisions according to my instincts and to be honest, I have never regretted anything.
When you enter a young company like mine – JP Mobile, you can see how people do things from scratch and along the way, you will be able to learn everything single about that business. Pretty much from A - Z. At first, I was doing customer support, and then partner sales and now I’m doing marketing. It was quite an interesting journey because everything happened so fast, both in me and in the office. I remember everyday after the office hours, I stayed back in the office to study. I bought quite a lot of books on marketing, read them all and pass some tests for digital marketing certificates such as the Adwords and the Google Analytics Certificates.
I am now focusing mainly on marketing operations. We have two main channels to advertise our products right now which are social media and Adwords. As I have the certificates from Google and have been involved intensively in the marketing activities from the start, my seniors entrust me with the in-house marketing activities. The budget is a bit less compared to the budget we allocate to external ad agencies but the performance is definitely better. I’m rather proud of that. Also, now we are introducing an online platform for foreigners in Japan called JP Smart Club. JP Smart Club, as a concept, is a place where foreigners can find anything they need for their life in Japan ranging from mobile service, food, job search, to health care. We run the platform based on a Reward Point System – JP Smart Points. Members can earn points by completing certain tasks such as completing surveys or referring our services to new people, and they can use the points to exchange for goods or pay for our services.
I want to continue working as a marketer and a sales man at the same time. This job has fulfilled my thirst for new things. I don’t want to be bored in the office. Also, I want to see our company JP Mobile go public. It is going to take a lot of hard work, intelligence and patience and I hope that in the end it’s going to be well worth it.