Otsuka People Talk

Senior Operating Officer Responsible for the Cosmedics Business

She was hired outside of Japan and joined Otsuka as an executive administrative assistant. She then became the Assistant Product Manager for InnerSignal, before being given responsibility for InnerSignal and UL•OS brands. As a Senior Operating Officer in her thirties, she leads Otsuka's cosmedics business.

In collaboration with NHK Enterprises, Inc.

March 2013

How do you see yourself?

Rather than describing myself, I can tell you that those around me jokingly refer to me as the “No. 1 guy's guy” at Otsuka Pharmaceutical. Even if a decision by my team is rejected at an important meeting such as an executive conference, I basically see it through properly to the end, without pulling back. I think those around me recognize this, and they compliment me with this tough name.

Tell us about your career path at Otsuka Pharmaceutical

Since I was in the U.S. before joining Otsuka, I was hired as part of overseas recruiting. I joined the company as an executive administrative assistant in 1997, and then was transferred to the business frontlines after working for almost 10 years at the head office. I became the Assistant Product Manager for InnerSignal. Then staying in the cosmedics area, I joined the project to start up UL•OS, and I have been responsible for this brand ever since.

What were your impressions
of Otsuka Pharmaceutical
when you joined the company?

I thought it was a company with a very empowering and outward-looking culture. Otsuka started its international expansion early on, and the executives had a very global outlook. It began to promote employee diversity a long time ago, and there were no barriers based on gender or nationality. In terms of career opportunities, people like me who joined as administrative assistants have been able to transition to frontline operations, and Otsuka has provided equal opportunities to a lot of people. That is something I did not realize until I actually joined the company. Otsuka Pharmaceutical has a very flexible organization.

Otsuka has a lot of female

I'm not talking about just my own experience;
overall there is a very fair work environment here. Perhaps in Japan women still aren't getting quite enough opportunities, and elements of the seniority system still remain, but despite this, I am grateful that I was presented with a very challenging opportunity. Although there have been some struggles for me, I think that Otsuka has been a really great place for me to be.

What’s your view of working at this company that lets
women and young people do what they want?

I am often criticized. There are a lot of people in and outside the company who have opinions different from mine, and sometimes I feel bad about it. However, I think people who cannot accept a bit of difficulty are not given challenging positions. Although I have been momentarily saddened by someone’s negative reaction to me, when I realize that the company has put its confidence in me, it makes me want to work even harder.


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