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How To Cultivate the Mindset Necessary To Be an Innovation Leader (Part 3)

6. Contemplating one's own values and environment, and defining a personal leadership image

Step 3 of the human resource development program revolved around "leadership image clarification," and participants were afforded the opportunity to look at their own careers and engage in dialogue about leadership image.

STEP 1: Medium- to long-term understanding improvement, STEP 2: Team activities (Future vision stories, Action plan proposal), STEP 3: Leadership image clarification

Through one-on-one sessions with the person in charge of their development and interviews with executives and department heads, participants were able to come up with a concrete leadership image.

Haraguchi: "I was able to deepen trust with my manager through one-on-one communication. In the first session, the leadership image I initially presented was criticized as being too abstract, but even upon revising the image, I was shocked to be asked, 'Do you think this type of leader will be respected by those working under them?' After considering what it is I want to accomplish and the kind of person that I want to become from multiple viewpoints, I was finally able to arrive at a leadership image that was acceptable."

Image of Haraguchi, new business promotion department
Haraguchi, new business promotion department

Moriyasu: "My department head has supported my development for the past three years, and somewhere in my mind I always wanted to live up to their expectations. However, during our one-on-one sessions, they advised me not to think of becoming a leader as a mere task, but to think of my ideal leadership image and what is necessary to reach that, making it a good opportunity for self-reflection."

Image of Moriyasu, millimeter wave business promotion department
Moriyasu, millimeter wave business promotion department

Shuto and Nakajima clarified their leadership image from the perspective of women who balance work with childcare.

Nakajima: "I had held the preconception that department heads were extremely hard-working and possessed strong wills and leadership skills, and so I had assumed that I wouldn't be suited for that kind of position. However, when I actually spoke to people, I discovered that department heads also worry about leadership, are learning new things every day, and also struggle with work-life balance. My manager told me that they didn't want me to become the same kind of leader as someone else, which led me to consider my own image of leadership without being held back by preconceptions."

Image of Nakajima, chemical device product department
Nakajima, chemical device product department

Shuto: "Amid the demands of work and parenting, I questioned whether I really wanted to become a leader. When I expressed this concern to my manager, they asked me about my own individual image of leadership, and what kind of support they could provide to make me more positive, which caused me to reassess the root cause of my anxiety and the unique values that I am able to demonstrate. This allowed me to construct my own leadership image, and I realized that if a woman like me who works part-time can become a leader, then that would pave the way for others like me."

Image of Shuto, production and sales systems department
Shuto, production and sales systems department

Nakajima: "Just like Shuto, I would also like to practice diverse leadership as a woman. And when I do, I would like to remain faithful to the beliefs and kindness that I learned from the department heads. I want to become a leader who can connect their beliefs to the future, whatever shape they take, whether it's thoughts for my colleagues, or love for our products."

7. Passing on Murata's potential, innovation, and culture of human resource development to the next generation

Make2030 launched as a program to nurture employees who will become the leaders that realize long-term direction Vision2030, and involved 130 employees from across the organization. What changes did participants notice during the one-and-a-half-year-long training program?

Shuto: "The biggest changes were that I gained a broader and deeper understanding of the company and was able to reexamine myself from new viewpoints. I once again came to appreciate that Murata is a company brimming with possibilities. I was able to better understand Murata's slogan, 'Innovator in Electronics,' and also became acutely aware of our responsibility to supply products to customers and our social responsibility toward the environment."

Nakajima: "Murata has a culture of proactive human resource development, and I feel that I have received firm guidance ever since joining the company. Even though I am busy in my work duties, my manager encouraged me to participate in Make2030. The biggest change I've observed within myself is wanting to pass this culture of human resource development on to the next generation."

Moriyasu: "Meeting people I don't normally interact with and engaging in frank, open discussions that bring everyone closer significantly contributed to my own personal growth. As I change as a person, Murata is also attempting to bring about change within the company. Through Make2030, I was glad to see that Murata is serious about reform."

Haraguchi: "I joined Murata as a mid-career hire, and I used to think that I was valued for my expertise and skills, but I came to discover that people placed hopes on me as an individual. And, through Make2030 I have come to like Murata even more. Going forward, I want to enact small changes from the position that I am in, and gradually change the company."

8. Creating a better future with the people encountered at Make2030

Even though the Make2030 human resource development program has now ended, people who participated together on the program continue to interact with each other.

Nakajima: "I still regularly meet with team members even now that the training is over. After going through a year and a half of training together, a sense of camaraderie has developed between us. I once again came to appreciate what a good company Murata is, and I want to convey that to other people, starting with the people within an immediate 5-meter radius."

Shuto: "We always keep our ears open for topics of interest, and regularly exchange information among team members."

Haraguchi: "I want to find even more like-minded colleagues. In total, 130 people participated in Make 2030, but in the future, I would like to spread the learning and insights gained to all employees throughout the whole company."

Moriyasu: "As an ambassador for realizing Vision2030, I would also like to spread the knowledge I gained from Make2030 to people within 5 meters of me. I believe that, together with the other Make2030 participants, we can surely create a better future for Murata."

Shuto: "We have to start working toward Vision2050 next! The seeds have already been sown in our mindset."

Moriyasu: "Whether it's in five years' time or 10 years' time, I would definitely like to reunite with my Make2030 teammates and take action that will lead to innovation."

*Departmental affiliations are correct as of October 2023.

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