What is “yoroshiku onegai shimasu”?
One day, a Japanese friend of mine with a seven year-old child asked me the following: “I wanted to say ‘Yoroshiku onegai shimasu for my daughter’ to her English conversation teacher, what should I have said in English?”
What would you tell her?
I told her that there is no direct translation in English for yoroshiku onegai shimasu. But, I believe what my friend was trying to express was “so that my daughter’s English will improve, please teach her with passion and affection”.
“Yoroshiku onegai shimasu” has many different meanings, depending on the situation. Let’s look at a few examples.
[Meeting someone for the first time]
A: Nice to meet you, my name is Sato.
B: My name is Louis. Yoroshiku onegai shimasu.
A: Same here, yoroshiku onegai shimasu.
In this case it acts as a greeting, similar to “nice to meet you”. Similar expressions exist in every language, so it is not very difficult to translate, and may be one of the first phrases learned by new students of Japanese.
[When beginning a meeting or group work]
A: Is everyone here?
B: Yes, it seems like it.
A: Well then, let’s begin. Today, yoroshiku onegai shimasu.
In this situation it can be taken as an encouragement (let’s work hard together), or words of gratitude (thank you for your valuable time). It also sounds like a preemptive excuse (please be generous and overlook any problems).
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That is all, yoroshiku onegai shimasu.
The new single will go on sale July 7th. Everyone, yoroshiku onegai shimasu!
In letters, there are set closing phrases such as keigu (sincerely yours), but there is also a nuance of “next you have to do something!”, and in the example of the commercial there is a clear implication of “purchase the single please!”
As shown, there are a number of ways to translate the meaning of yoroshiku onegai shimasu, but the important point for understanding this phrase is that it is not said with regards to something that has already happened, but rather an expression of gratitude, apology, explanation, or other expression about something that will happen in the future. It’s important function is to say arigatou (thank you) or gomen nasai (sorry) about something that has not yet happened.
In any event, yoroshiku onegai shimasu is an extremely convenient way to end conversations and written pieces. From now on, please closely observe the situations and conversations in which it is used. If you are ensure the meaning or intention with which it is being used, let us know. Yoroshiku onegai shimasu!!
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