Report on the Second Meeting of the Group DEI Promotion Council
The Group DEI Promotion Council is a forum for continuous dialogue on group-wide initiatives, based on a shared understanding of the DEI issues that need to be addressed in order to achieve the Panasonic Group’s commitment to ensuring management that enables each employee to reach their full potential.
The second meeting of the Group DEI Promotion Council was held in July in response to the recognition of the importance of creating opportunities for dialogue among top management, which came to light at the first meeting of the Group DEI Promotion Council held in February 2022. A total of 18 people participated in the meeting online, including ten CEOs and managers from operating companies, Panasonic Holdings, and Panasonic Operational Excellence, as well as eight employees personally affected in some way by the themes of this dialogue.
Themes of dialogue
Since diversity covers a wide range of subject matter, we set three specific themes for this meeting: “coping at work with an illness,” “LGBTQ,” and “enabling employees with disabilities to thrive in the workplace.” Short speeches were given by employees who were involved in each theme, and a dialogue was held.
Anyone can be in a situation of having to work while battling an illness. It is also estimated that 15% of the world’s population has a disability and about 9% of the world’s population is LGBTQ. The participants deepened their understanding of how they can work more actively from their respective positions.
Feedback from employees
1. Coping at work with an illness
When I found out that I was ill, I was extremely worried about my future career. Everyone goes through ups and downs in life, so I want Panasonic to be a company where I don’t have to give up on my career.
I don’t want others to take it upon themselves to lighten my load at work just because I am sick. I will ask for help when I need it, so please leave me to do what I can do.
It is important to be able to talk to the people around you and your boss, but there are also things you can discuss with people who have the same problems as you. It would be great if such a network existed within the company and support was provided to connect people.
“None of my colleagues have come out, and I can’t see any other LGBTQ people around me -> I don’t know what would happen if I came out in such as environment -> LGBTQ people are left unable to come out -> I can’t see any other LGBTQ people around me… ” I tend to fall into this kind of negative spiral, and feel the need to break out of it.
I think it is effective to work on the three axes of “knowledge,” “awareness” and “mechanisms” to create a workplace with psychological safety. It is important to continue to repeatedly communicate the importance of these while operating mechanisms, including systems.
I do not think that I have lost anything by being born with a disability. Although I have had some difficult times, I am grateful to be able to feel happy now. I hope that more and more people will feel this way and be able to work to the best of their ability, and I think that DEI warmly encourages them to do so.
Few people with disabilities are in positions of responsibility. There may be an assumption that people with disabilities do not work in management. I want people to know that there are people with disabilities who aspire to be in management positions.
Feedback from management
- It is necessary to deal with employees in such a way that ensures that others do not have the power to arbitrarily decide or change their career paths or job content without confirming their wishes.
- Accidents and illnesses can happen to anyone at any time. I want to create a workplace where employees do not have to give up on their own careers in such situations.
- What is important is that there is a place where people can make use of their individuality and talents. I would like to discuss what we can do to bring out the best in each individual.
- Having heard what everyone had to say today, it struck me once again just how diverse people are. Everybody has strong points and weak points. Good and bad, likes and dislikes are part of who we are. The same goes for senior managers. The company is a collection of such people. We should listen to those affected by these issues and take hints from the insights gained and see each person’s individuality to develop their strengths and support their weaknesses. We hope to become a workplace where we can do this on a daily basis.
- Report on the Third Meeting of the Group DEI Promotion Council - Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
- Report on the First Meeting of the Group DEI Promotion Council - Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
- Support for Every Individual: LGBTQ - Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
- Support for Every Individual: People with Disabilities - Diversity, Equity & Inclusion