Noriki Tamura faced such a dilemma when he moved from Japan to Canada almost ten years ago. As an immigrant to a new country, he wanted to make the most out of the opportunity to work at a job he loved.
Because he loves food, he wanted to open a street food restaurant. There was a problem, though. In 2005, “Vancouver city bylaws pretty much limited street food to hotdogs and chestnuts.” (source, Vancouver Sun) Japanese cuisine doesn’t include hot dogs. In fact, in the video below, Noriki-san said that he “had never cooked a hot dog!”
Every entrepreneur can teach us something. Every immigrant can teach us something. When moving to a different country or learning to interact with people in another culture, we face so many challenges and limitations. Some are expected, while others are unexpected.
I was really impressed and inspired when hearing that the ONLY food vendors were allowed to sell was hot dogs, and this Japanese immigrant who did not even know what a hot dog was did not let this stop him. He took what he ‘knew,’ learned what was ‘unknown,’ and mixed the two together to create JAPADOG.
It’s really motivating!
In the video below, Noriki-san intrigues me when he said, “I don’t have experience, so, always I have to try and try, I have to change it… the ingredients…”
I feel many immigrants can relate to this. Entrepreneurs regardless of moving away from home can surely relate to this as well.
Additionally, Noriki-san says that he has been offered many opportunities to franchise, but has denied them. Franchising could mean growing the business, while in some cases losing control of it! As humble as he is in the video, he says that he has passed up those opportunities out of ‘lack of experience.’ A wise man, indeed!
I am inspired by Noriki-san. Are you?? Feel free to share your thoughts below in the comments section.
Japadog – The Story of Japadog from their website
Helping a Japanese family get used to life in the USA
An Indian’s Journey to Canada