Ni-shūkan ni ikkai wa shain o shussha sasete-imasu.

(I have employees come to the office once every two weeks.)

Situation 1: Mr. Okubo is talking with his client, Mr. Sato, who manages a small company.

大久保: 佐藤さんの会社はほとんどリモートワークなんですね。

佐藤: ええ。でも、2週間に1回は社員を出社させています。会社でなければできない仕事もありますから。

Ōkubo: Satō-san no kaisha wa hotondo rimōto wāku nan desu ne.

Satō: Ee. Demo, ni-shūkan ni ikkai wa shain o shussha sasete-imasu. Kaisha de nakereba dekinai shigoto mo arimasu kara.

Okubo: Your company is (doing) mostly remote work, isn’t it, Mr. Sato?

Sato: Yes. But, I have (my) employees come to the office once every two weeks. There are some jobs that can be done only in the company.

The causative form of a Type 1 “う” verb is created by changing the last kana to an “a” and attaching せる: so 休(やす)む (to rest) becomes 休ませる. With a Type 2 “る” verb, replace the final る with させる: so 寝(ね)る becomes 寝させる. Finally, the irregular verbs する (to do) and 来(く)る (to come) become させる (to make someone do) and 来させる (to make someone come), respectively.

When using a transitive verb (TV), the basic sentence structure for causative is “XがYにZをTV”:


(The boss has her staff make the documents.)

When using an intransitive verb (IV), such as 休む, the basic structure is “XがYをIV”:

課長が部下を休ませた。 (The boss had her staff take the day off.)

Situation 2: Ms. Yamani and Mr. Okubo are talking about a meeting with Ace Co.

ヤマニ: エース社との打ち合わせには三田さんが行きたいと言っているそうですね。

大久保: ええ。それで、三田さんに行かせることにしました。

Yamani: Eesu-sha to no uchiawase ni wa Mita-san ga ikitai to itte-iru sō desu ne.

Ōkubo: Ee. Sore de, Mita-san ni ikaseru koto ni shimashita.

Yamani: I heard that Mr. Mita wants to go to the meeting with Ace Co., right?

Okubo: Yes, so I’m going to let him go.

The causative form is also used when the person who is being allowed to do something isn’t being forced to. In Situation 2, for example, Mr. Mita is willing to go to the meeting, so Mr. Okubo is letting him go and not making him go. The sentence patterns in this case are “XがYにIV” for intransitive verbs, and “XがYにZをTV” for transitive ones.

山田さんはよくおもしろいことを言(い)って、みんなを笑(わら)わせる。 (Mr. Yamada often says a joke, and makes us laugh.)

It is easier to tell the difference between “make” and “let” if a giving or receiving verb (あげる, くれる, もらう, やる) accompanies the causative structure:


(My father let me drink alcohol.)


(I let Atsushi go to the party.)

Bonus Dialogue: Continued from Situation 2.

大久保(おおくぼ): エース社(しゃ)のミーティングには三田(みた)さんといっしょにセレさんも行(い)かせます。

ヤマニ: そうですか。じゃ、安心(あんしん)ですが、三田さんも最近(さいきん)はしっかりしてきましたね。

大久保: ええ、入社(にゅうしゃ)したばかりのころは、みんなを心配(しんぱい)させることもありましたが、今(いま)はもうだいじょうぶです。それに、ときどきいい企画(きかく)を出(だ)すこともあるんですよ。

ヤマニ: そうですか。あまりきびしくしないで、社員(しゃいん)に自由(じゆう)に考(かんが)えさせることも大切(たいせつ)ですね。

大久保: そのうえ、彼(かれ)はちょっとした冗談(じょうだん)を言(い)って、みんなをリラックスさせることができるんです。

ヤマニ: なるほど。それは貴重(きちょう)な人材(じんざい)ですね。そういうところから、交渉(こうしょう)がうまく進(すす)むこともありますから。では、期待(きたい)しましょう。

Okubo: I’ll have Mr. Sere go to the Ace Co. meeting with Mr. Mita.

Yamani: I see. Well, that’s a relief, but lately Mr. Mita is coming to be trustworthy.

Okubo: Yeah, when he first joined the company, he sometimes made us worry, but now he’s OK. Besides, he sometimes comes up with good plans.

Yamani: Really. It’s also important to let employees think freely without being too strict.

Okubo: In any case, he makes a few jokes and helps everyone relax.

Yamani: I see. He’s a valuable person. With such a point, negotiations sometimes can go well. Then, let’s hope (for a good result).

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