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Al Isago Parvez

CEO & Representative Director
Advance K.K.

Date of birth: June 30, 1966

Hometown: New York City

Number of years in Japan (cumulative): 27 (as of May 2019)

Al Isago Parvez
Q1: What was your first encounter with Japan?

I visited Japan for the first time in 1972 when I was six, traveling with my mother visiting her hometown of Sendai. This trip left a big impression on me and I returned several times during my youth, developing my strong appreciation of Japanese culture and history. My lifelong dream was to work in Japan and it was fulfilled when I was accepted to the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Programme in 1992.

Q2: Please state your motto in life and why you have chosen it.

My motto is there’s always an opportunity to make a difference in your life and for others. My career in the “people connection business” has allowed me to live up to my motto by enabling people to achieve new heights in their careers and help companies grow their business in Japan.

Q3 : Over your career, what achievement are you the proudest of?

For more than 20 years, my team and I were able to successfully place numerous CEOs, chief financial officers and remarkable business leaders at startups and leading multinational corporations who made meaningful and positive contributions to their companies. I get inspired and have a sense of pride when witnessing my candidates become more confident and grow throughout their careers.

Q4 : What are your goals during your time in Japan, your current position or in life?

As I approach my third decade in Japan, I truly feel Japan is my home and there’s still so much more for me to discover. I would like to explore the heartland of Japan, improve my Japanese language skills and immerse myself even deeper in cultural and culinary pursuits. I hope to continue to expand my outreach to a new generation of future business leaders who will lead innovation in Japan.

Q5 : What wisdom, advice or tips can you give to people living and working in Japan?

Living and working in Japan can be very rewarding in many ways, but you need to have a good sense of who you are and an outline of what you want to achieve during your journey in Japan. My advice would be to stay curious, stay focused, be authentic, have a mindset to evolve and try to be that person you always strove to be. Japan has a lot to offer to someone who is willing to dream it and build it — and like me, you can realize your American dream in Japan.

Last updated: May 13, 2019