Living up to great expectations with ‘dake atte’

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Ano wakasa-de Shingapōru-shishachō-ni natta dake-atte … (Just as you’d expect of a manager selected to run the Singapore branch while so young …)

Situation 1: Mr. Mita just returned to work after a business trip to Singapore, where his old colleague Simon works.

三田:  サイモンくんは、あの若さでシンガポール支社長に なっただけあって、大活躍だったよ。

Mita: Saimon-kun-wa, ano wakasa-de Shingapōru-shishachō-ni natta dake-atte, daikatsuyaku-datta-yo.

Mita: Simon is really shaking things up, just as you might expect from a manager selected at such a young age to run the Singapore branch.

Today we will introduce the meaning and usages of XだけあってY (because of being X, Y is the case). In this pattern, X is the noun or the noun-modifying form of a verb, adjective or noun phrase, and Y is the clause that naturally follows or might be expected from fact X. Y reflects X’s position, efforts, experience, etc., as in: 一流(いち りゅう)ホテルだけあって、サービスは満点(まんてん)だった (The service was as impeccable as you’d expect from a first-class hotel). In Situation 1, X is the fact that Mr. Simon became the Singapore branch manager while so young; Y is the fact he works hard there; Y is what anyone would expect based on X. だけあって can be replaced by (な)ので, but the former has the connotation of evaluation or emotion, while (な)ので is a simple description. だけあって is mainly used for praising X, and the adverb さすが, a marker of praise, often goes with this pattern, as below.

Situation 2: Continued from Situation 1.

三田:   あそこは小さな出張所だったのを、サイモンくんが あんなに大きくしたんだ。

グレイ:  さすが、サイモンさん!ヤマニ部長が抜擢しただけあるね。

Mita: Asoko-wa chiisana shutchōjo-datta-no-o, Saimon-kun-ga annani ōkiku-shita-n-da.

Gray: Sasuga, Saimon-san! Yamani-buchō-ga batteki-shita- dake-aru-ne.

Mita: It was only a tiny branch office before, but Simon made it that big.

Gray: Way to go, Simon! Just as you might expect after he was specially selected by department head Yamani.

When Y is obvious, it is omitted, and the pattern changes to Xだけある/あります, as Ms. Gray uses it above.

Bonus Dialogue: At an office meeting, employees are discussing their rival company.

大久保:  最近(さいきん)の市場(しじょう)調査(ちょうさ)に よりますと、BK社(しゃ)のほとんどの製品(せいひん) のシェアが、わが社を上回(うわまわ)っております。

ヤマニ:  老舗(しにせ)だけあって、古(ふる)い顧客(こきゃく)が いますからね。

ジョンソン:しかし、BK社の「ビスラット」はわが社の「スラリビューティー」の後発(こうはつ)商品(しょうひん)です。これも 負(ま)けているというのが、納得(なっとく)できません。

大久保:  はい。新(あたら)しいコマーシャルも、パッケージの 変更(へんこう)も、あまり効果(こうか)は見(み)られませんでした。


ヤマニ:  いえ、そんな風(ふう)に考(かんが)えてはいけません。 大久保(おおくぼ)課長(かちょう)は「ほとんどの製品」と言(い)いました。つまり、全部(ぜんぶ)ではないという ことです。わが社のシェアがBK社を上回っているものについて分析(ぶんせき)する必要(ひつよう)があります。

ジョンソン:ああ、その通(とお)りです!大久保課長、頼(たの)み ますよ。

大久保:  はい、承知(しょうち)しました。[ひとりごと]ヤマニ部長(ぶちょう)は、いつも攻(せ)めの姿勢(しせい)で困難 (こんなん)に立ち向かって行く。さすが「鉄(てつ)の 女(おんな)」と言われているだけあるなあ。

Okubo: According to recent market research, most of BK Co.’s products have more of a market share than ours.

Yamani: As you might expect from such a long-established firm, they have their old customers.

Johnson: Anyway, our Surari-Beauty went on sale before BK’s Bisratto. I don’t understand why, despite that, we’re still losing to them.

Okubo: Sure. We changed its commercials, and the packaging too. But we still haven’t seen any results.

Johnson: It means we can’t beat an established player, doesn’t it?

Yamani: We can’t think like that. Mr. Okubo said “most goods” before. So, that means not all of them. We have to do some research about the goods that are outselling BK’s.

Johnson: I couldn’t agree more. I leave it to you, Mr. Okubo.

Okubo: Yes, understood. [To himself] Department head Yamani always takes an aggressive approach when it comes to difficulties — just what you’d expect from someone known as the “Iron Lady.”