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Live WIRe from Japan: Interview with Eriko Ota

April 28, 2018

Live WIRe is a new portion of our blog dedicated to WIRe community-generated content and an opportunity to read and share stories, insights, and experiences in MR from WIRe members across the globe. If you'd like to submit your own Live WIRe content , contact Jessica Sage (jessica@womeninresearch.org)

Kirin Co., Ltd. Brand Strategy Department Kirin Institute of Food and Culture Senior Fellow 
Eriko Ota

  • When you look back on your own career, please tell us about any turning points that can lead to your own success.
  • When and what happened?
  • What made you successful at that time? (Example: change in environment/mental state, skill improvement, support from boss/mentor, support from family, etc.) Why is it important?
  • How have these turning points helped your current career?

Around 2000 , when I was sent to Kirin Seagram Co., Ltd., I searched for the cause of whiskey away. Taking advantage of the experience of that time, 2002 when he returned to the years Kirin Brewery, youth, women, for the new target, such as a senior to work, they are 1 began to human insight search to see how to spend the day. Until then, people were viewed from the perspective of categories such as tea, but it was a turning point in thinking about what products would be close to them by looking at people's lives.

When I reported the Human Insight, I received feedback from the marketing department that it was a new approach. In addition, we worked on the project in collaboration with a young ad agency, but for them, working as an equal partner with the client gave good results to both parties.

This is the opportunity, 2007 when it established a giraffe eating habits Culture Research Institute in years, medium- and long-term thinking, beyond the category of person 1 was able to set forth the theme of capturing how to spend and the scene of the day. Ten years after it was founded , the company has changed its attitude to work hard on human insight.

After all, I think that “not giving up” and “continuing to do the right thing” are linked to my current career.

  • Have you ever had a difficult or difficult time looking back at your own career? Please let us know as much as you can.
  • (If YES) What happened when and what?
  • How did you overcome it? (Example: change in environment/mental state, skill improvement, support from boss/mentor, support from family, etc.) Why is it important?
  • How have your experiences during this time helped your career?

Sometimes I didn't get along well with my direct boss, and I thought I couldn't understand what I was doing. At that time, I couldn't devise a way to communicate while imagining what my boss wanted. I was working because I thought that if I put up with it for 1-2 years, my department or my boss's department would change. If you “do what you are doing right”, people around you will see it, and some people will actually talk to you.

I also tried to do work that people didn't like. For example, even for complex projects involving a consulting company, we took the initiative in advancing the project in collaboration with a consultant. As a result, I am grateful to them, and I was able to learn about their methods and problem solving methods.

Now that I have more opportunities to talk to top management, etc., I have tried to communicate what they are thinking and what to say. If their interests matched our message, I think the insights would be communicated quickly and correctly.

  • What advice would you give to you if you are a new graduate or if you have a career problem?

He sometimes mentors young women, but often says:

  1. Don't worry too much about relationships: The organization will change in 1-2 years, so do what you have to do then. Then someone is watching.
  2. Wide range of information ‧ Expand your horizons by touching people: Your horizons tend to narrow, so you can see yourself relatively by talking to other companies in the field or by touching information.
  3. "Easy to produce than to think.": Women often think early and conclude (give up) early. For the time being, there are many cases in which there is no big deal when trying it (example: balancing work and family).

Regarding the balance between work and family, even couples are strangers, so I think it is necessary to discuss them without hassle and to be a little concerned with the other person.

  • Finally, please tell us your motto, your motto.

"Flap from the shelf"

Serendipity in English

Anything that falls from the shelves will be picked up even with garbage. Sometimes I shake the shelves and pick up fluffy rice.

Opportunity ‧ If you find an opportunity, don't hesitate to take it or create it yourself.

You'll always find what you want and you'll find more than you want, and you'll sometimes seize opportunities.

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