"Uncovering the Common Threads in Successful Business Models: Lessons from IKEA, Yakiniku Restaurants, and the Kumon Method"


Hatched by Glasp

Aug 05, 2023

4 min read


"Uncovering the Common Threads in Successful Business Models: Lessons from IKEA, Yakiniku Restaurants, and the Kumon Method"


Every successful business model has underlying principles and strategies that contribute to its success. In this article, we will explore the common points between IKEA, yakiniku restaurants, and the Kumon method. While seemingly different, these businesses share key elements that have allowed them to thrive in their respective industries. By understanding these common threads, aspiring entrepreneurs and business owners can gain valuable insights into building sustainable and profitable ventures.

The Power of "Pushing Work onto Customers":

Both IKEA and yakiniku restaurants, at their core, utilize a business process that involves pushing some of the work onto customers while adding an element of entertainment. IKEA famously requires customers to assemble their furniture, while yakiniku restaurants have patrons cook their own meat on tabletop grills. By involving customers in the process, these businesses create a unique and enjoyable experience, leading to a win-win situation for both the business and the customers.

The Kumon Method: Simplifying Education Support:

The Kumon method, on the other hand, simplifies education support by modeling the expertise in reading, writing, and calculation and allowing children to self-study with the guidance of non-educator instructors. This business model focuses on providing support rather than direct teaching, empowering children to take charge of their learning while still receiving necessary assistance. By streamlining the process, Kumon has created a successful and scalable business model.

Lessons from "Tachigui Soba Wanderers":

In the article "Tachigui Soba Wanderers: Lessons in Community Building" by Ryusei Takahashi, he highlights key principles for launching successful communities. These principles can be applied to various ventures, providing actionable advice for entrepreneurs looking to establish their own communities.

1. Start with Passion and Flexibility:

When starting a community, it's essential to begin with enthusiasm and a flexible mindset. If the initial concept doesn't work, be open to making changes or even shutting it down if necessary. The key is to have a strong sense of purpose and be willing to adapt to meet the needs of the community.

2. Find a Theme that Resonates:

To create a successful community, it's crucial to have a theme that resonates with potential members. This theme should be relatable and evoke a sense of shared experiences or interests. By providing a platform for like-minded individuals to connect, the community can grow organically and foster meaningful connections.

3. Keep it Simple and Accessible:

Simplicity and accessibility are key factors in ensuring the success of a community. By keeping the content or activities straightforward and easy to participate in, more people will be inclined to join and engage. Implementing clear guidelines or requirements for participation can also help streamline the community and create a sense of belonging.

Actionable Advice for Entrepreneurs:

1. Embrace the Probability of Success and Failure:

Just like in life, businesses face a certain degree of uncertainty. Embracing the probability of success and failure allows entrepreneurs to make informed decisions and take calculated risks. By acknowledging the likelihood of both outcomes, entrepreneurs can adjust their strategies accordingly and stay resilient in the face of challenges.

2. Nurture What Works:

Identifying and nurturing what works in a business is crucial for sustainable growth and success. By focusing on the strengths and positive aspects of a venture, entrepreneurs can build upon them and create a competitive advantage. This involves continually evaluating and refining processes, products, and services to ensure they align with customer needs and preferences.

3. Take Action and Adapt:

While waiting for the perfect opportunity or circumstance may seem appealing, it is essential for entrepreneurs to take action and adapt along the way. By being proactive and agile, entrepreneurs can seize opportunities, learn from failures, and pivot when necessary. Flexibility and adaptability are key traits of successful business owners.


By examining the commonalities between successful business models like IKEA, yakiniku restaurants, the Kumon method, and community-building ventures, we can extract valuable insights and actionable advice. Pushing work onto customers, simplifying processes, finding resonance in themes, and embracing flexibility are just a few key aspects that contribute to their success. By incorporating these principles into our own ventures and continuously learning and adapting, we can increase our chances of building thriving businesses and communities. Remember, success is not guaranteed, but with the right mindset and strategies, we can navigate the ever-changing business landscape and increase our chances of achieving our goals.

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