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A more balanced internal structure and chain of responsibility are the key to stemming the rash of corporate misconduct plaguing the country’s major firms, according to Takanori Matsuura, an expert in Japanese corporate culture.

Top executives can exercise power only when they have support from their rank and file, said Matsuura, a professor at Tama University in management and information science. “When they lose support from their subordinates, they lose their centripetal power. When they lose their power, they have a sense of crisis. So the answer to creating healthy management lies inside the firms,” Matsuura said. As examples, Matsuura cited the recent cases of All Nippon Airways and Bandai Co., in which top executives changed major decisions in response to protests from their employees.

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