We Japanese Language School in Shibuya Tokyo Japanese Language School



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April 2017

Student of Japanese Language School Mr. Derek O’Neil
デレク オニールさん

〜Make Life Sparkle with Language〜

This month on "We face," we interviewed Derek O'Neil from We Japanese Language School. As an Australian, he came to Japan 11 years ago when a company he works for assigned him to work in Tokyo to expand its market in Japan. He has been attending We for almost 4 years--longer by far even among many students who have been attending We for a long time.

今月のWe faceは日本語部門のDerek O’Neilさんです。

Interview インタビュー

  • Q. We heard that you have recently welcomed some new members into your family.

    A. Yes, our rst son Charles was born three years ago, and our rst daughter Rose last October, and after adding a new Shiba family dog Kaminari at the end of last year, our family has suddenly grown to ve members. Kaminari was a Christmas present from me to my wife.

  • Q. 最近ご家族が増えたと聞きました。

    A. はい、3年前に長男チャールズが生まれ、去年10月には長女ローズが、暮れに柴犬のかみなりが加わり、あっという間に5人(?)家族になりました。かみなりは、妻へのクリスマスプレゼントだったんですよ。(笑)

  • Q. Do you mean to say that you gave Kaminari-chan as a present to your wife when Rose was just two months old?

    A. Exactly, and come to think of it, I remember her having this complex expression on her face when she saw what I got for her. I'm sure you can imagine how chaotic things are at our home. Thankfully, I work at home so I can help out with child-rearing.

  • Q. ということは、ローズちゃんが2か月のときにかみなりちゃんを奥様にプレゼントなさった?

    A. そう、さすがにちょっと複雑な顔をしていましたね。(笑)ご想像通り我が家は今てんやわんやです。まあ、私が自宅で仕事ができるので子育ても手伝えていますが。

  • Q. What kind of work do you do at the moment?

    A. I have two jobs right now. One is related to advertising technology for an IT company, and I also work for a supplement company I founded with my wife called "Sparkle" which means "kagayaki" in Japanese. My wife is in charge of product concept and marketing, and I’m in charge of advertising.

  • Q. 現在どんなお仕事をなさっているんですか?

    A. 2つの仕事をしています。1つはIT企業で広告技術関連の仕事、もうひとつは、妻と立ち上げた「Sparkle」、日本語で「輝き」というサプリメントの会社の仕事です。妻は製品のコンセプトやマーケティングを、私は主に広告を担当しています。

  • Q. That’s a wonderful name! What kind of supplements do you sell?

    A. We sell collagen supplements made using only natural ingredients. Our target market is America at the moment, but we plan to expand the market in Japan also.

  • Q. すごく素敵なネーミングですね! どんなサプリメントですか?

    A. 天然の原料を使ったコラーゲンのサプリです。現在はアメリカをターゲットとしていますが、次は日本で市場を拡大したいと思っています。

  • Q. Considering how the American market is ooded with all kinds of supplements, wouldn't it be a challenge to try breaking into that market?

    A. You know, collagen supplement is a household name in Japan, but not so much yet in America. As the name implies, many people associate supplements with an image of "supplementing" what our body lacks, but our company is focused on proactively assisting customers to maintain their overall health. As an example of that, we regularly provide recipes that use our products using e-mail newsletters. Also, we offer around 20 different kinds of products with various avors such as orange, cucumber, mint and ginger. And we offer our products in two price categories accordingly named "Favorite (Konomi)" and "Love (Ai)".

  • Q. アメリカはサプリ王国ですよね。参入はチャレンジングなのでは?

    A. コラーゲンは日本では馴染みのあるサプリですが、アメリカではまだあまり知られていないんですよ。サプリというと、足りないものを補うというイメージがあるかもしれませんが、「Sparkle」はお客様の総合的な健康を積極的に保つお手伝いをしています。例えば、ウエブマガジンで「Sparkle」を使ったレシピなどをお送りしています。また、味もオレンジやきゅうり&ミント、生姜など約20種類あります。価格も「Favorite(好み)」と「Love(愛)」の2段階あるんです。

  • Q. There seems to be a wide range of choices. Of course, we are also hoping to provide that so-called "sparkle" to you through providing lessons. So, what is the goal of learning Japanese right now?

    A. Of course, my goals have been changing in step with all the changes happening in my life here, but this one goal that never changes is passing N2 of Japanese Language Prociency Test. For now, I hope to be able to do seminars I’ve been doing in English in Japanese in the near future to prepare to expand our market in Japan.

  • Q. 選択肢が色々あるのはいいですね。Weも、レッスンでデレクさんにSparkle(きらめいて)欲しいです。今の日本語学習の目標は何ですか?

    A. 日本での生活が変わるにつれて目標は変わりますが、いつもN2合格は大きい目標として持っています。当面は、日本での市場拡大に向けて、今まで英語で行ってきたセミナーを、近いうちに日本語でしてみたいです。

  • Let us help you and "sparkle" to that end then!

  • 是非、Sparkleしましょう!

Interview Wrap Up

Derek-san's life has been lled with changes regarding family and work. And it is an honor for our "We" team to be given an opportunity to help Derek-san change and grow through identifying and responding to his changing wants and needs in studying Japanese. Just as how his company "Sparkle" functions under the concept of bringing health and happiness in life to customers, "We" is also committed to bringing about that "sparkle" to our students through language education.
Please watch out school promotion video which also features Derek-san:

ご家族の変化に合わせてお仕事も変えてこられたデレクさん。その時々の日本語のニーズとウォンツにお応えすべく、チーム一丸となってデレクさんのChange and Growをお手伝いさせていただけることは本当に光栄です。
「Sparkle」が、お客様の健康とLife全体の幸せをコンセプトとされているように、Weというスクールも、そしてWeが行う言語教育も、全ては生徒さんの人生のSparkleのためにある_と決意を新たにした次第です。DerekさんはWe Japanese Language Schoolの紹介ビデオにも出てくださっています。ぜひこちらをご覧ください。

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