My ideal was to spend 1 year in Japan studying Japanese. My sister took 1 year course in Ritsumeikan and felt that it helped boost her Japanese tremendously. However, she had to work hard to increase her level in Kanji knowledge before being allowed to take more advanced course.
I am not new with going to language school thingy. I spent 3 months in San Francisco to brush up my English for graduate school. It was very expensive and I should say that my English didn’t improve much. However, I had better understanding of living in the US and was able to travel widely.
Right now I’m watching Japanese dramas and news and having twice weekly Japanese conversation class in addition to JLPT studies. It’s not enough to replace one year study, but I hope to improve as much as to be functional in Japanese business. As somebody said, JLPT 1 is just a start. It’s a great start which hopefully will open a door in my future.