Prime Minister Abe holds a Catalyst Commendation presented by Deborah Gillis, President & CEO of Catalyst.


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New Research

The Journey to Inclusion: Building Workplaces That Work for Women in Japan is a new report that explores workplace culture in Japan and, specifically, the impact of inclusion on women. Catalyst surveyed 468 team members from finance, technology, pharmaceutical, and consumer products companies, aged 21 and over, to learn how companies and leaders can promote feelings of inclusion for women and men in Japan. This report is based on research conducted in Australia, China(Shanghai), India, Mexico, Germany, and the United States, to understand current behaviors of current leaders in Japan and to  identify key criteria for an inclusive leader in Japan.

On October 17, Emily Wakeling and Tsuki Tsukahara introduced this important research and lead a discussion among panel members on how companies can “break the mold” by developing inclusive leadership from within at a panel called "Inclusive Leadership: Getting More From Diversity" at the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan's Women in Business Summit. Around 180 people attended this panel.



The Catalyst Distinction

With more than 50 years of global work and its recognition programs, ranging from the Catalyst AwardCatalyst Canada Honours, and Practices, Catalyst has identified essential criteria that predict diversity and inclusion progress, such as the importance of changes at the organizational level, employee engagement, and positive impacts achieved by initiatives. In 2017Catalyst chose to award five companies in Japan for exemplifying these criteria. Evaluations for the Catalyst Distinction were made based on this expertise and knowledge to spotlight successful initiatives to overcome specific challenges in Japan.

The Catalyst Distinction spotlights successful D&I activities with proven solutions that have had a positive impact on women’s advancement as well as talent and workplace challenges. It responds to the rising need for changes with regard to D&I in the workplace in Japan and around the globe by recognizing role model activities that set examples for other companies to adopt in their efforts to overcome specific challenges and accelerate the progress of women’s advancement.

The Catalyst Distinction-winning initiatives are:  

  • Deutsche Bank Group Japan
    Deutsche Bank’s initiative is a holistic diversity effort across its Japan offices. To address gender-specific barriers, the program includes a strong recruitment focus tohire more women as well as internal and external learning opportunities for women at the organization. In addition, senior leaders and male champions are involved and speak publicly about the importance of diversity and inclusion. 

  • LIXIL Group Corporation
    LIXIL’s initiative comprises multiple “action-focused” programs to engage expecting and working mothers, as well as women and men champions. The programs are helping to create more inclusive work environments throughhigh-potential development and work-life effectiveness components.

  • McDonald’s Company (Japan) Ltd.  
    McDonald’s initiative drives cultural change and inclusion through senior leadership communications, talent development, and work-style innovation. The initiative features strong engagement from the CEO, senior leadership, JWLN (Japan Women's Leadership Network), and human resources, which helps create a more positive working environment for both women and men. 

  • Seiyu GK 
    Seiyu’s initiative seeks to address the unique challenges for women in Japan and in retail including managing work-life effectiveness and unconscious bias. The“Women-in-Retail (WIR)” program, which has been tailored to address Japan-specific issues, provides development opportunities and empowers female store managers and others by encouraging discussions on work-life balance and sponsorship with supervisors and senior management in the store operation division. 

  • Sumitomo Mitsui Banking Corporation (SMBC) 
    SMBC’s initiative focuses on increasing women’s representation at the managerial-and-above level. The program features strong CEO and leadership participation and provides business unit leaders with the tools they need to shape the right diversity strategy for their business units as well as to engage externally with other organizations and clients. 


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About Catalyst Japan

Founded in 2014, Catalyst Japan shares its knowledge and solutions about diversity and inclusion in the workplace with the Japanese business community and government, helping transform the workforce with the power of women.

Catalyst Japan's Advisory Board is made up of leaders dedicated to advancing women and business.