A Call for Managerial Diversity in Japan
How More Women Aids Corporate Reform and Profit
At a Tokyo forum on diversity and inclusion, 200 managers and executives learned that diversity management is a major element of corporate reform and increasing profitability:
- Diversity and inclusion let struggling corporations revive themselves, said Yukako Uchinaga, vice chairwoman of Benesse Corp. and chief executive officer of Berlitz International Inc.
- “[D]iversity … aims at fully utilizing the potential of workers with different perspectives,” Uchinaga said.
- Haruko Watanabe, of Goldman Sachs Japan Co., said that at her firm, “Today, no male managers at the middle and top levels doubt the relevancy of the diversity program.”
- Any hesitation among Japanese female employees to shoulder challenging assignments is because they have had few role models in Japanese corporate society, Michiko Achilles, managing executive officer and chief human resources officer at Aozora Bank, said.
- “Yet, we are now in an advantageous position in that we can learn from the history and experiences of diversity programs in the United States,” she said.
- The event was coordinated by the US-based NPO Global Organization for Leadership and Diversity (GOLD) and its Japanese sister group, Global Enhancement of Women’s Executive Leadership (GEWEL).
Hiroko Tatebe, founder and executive director of GOLD, said, “We must expand the trans-Pacific network of people, both men and women, who are aware of the significance of diversity.”
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