Fundamental Behavior 13 – Be a team player
Working as a team means joining efforts towards a common goal. Throughout my career at YKK Argentina S.A, I was able to observe great leadership examples that taught me valuable lessons about what it means to guide, motivate, and feel part of a team.
One morning in 1982, when I was in charge of the Dyeing Sector, I went to see the Director of Pilar’s Industrial Plant at that time, Mr. Sambyakugari. I couldn’t find him at his office: he was helping to unload a container that had arrived from Japan.
“We need to improve the packaging of the boxes coming from Japan,” he explained. That was the first lesson: to work side-by-side with others to understand tasks well and look for solutions together. Also, to consider that every topic is important, even when it is not my sector or direct responsibility.
During those years, Mr. Hoshi ‒ my boss at the Dyeing Sector ‒ put a lot of pressure on me because he wanted me to do my best. Later, I understood how much he helped me grow and develop my skills.
Today, those of us who’ve held leadership positions for a long time care deeply about the growth and development of younger professionals. We know that they are the ones that will be in charge of the company in the future.
At YKK Argentina, I learned that genuinely caring for people’s well-being makes it easier to reach our company goals. Increasing productivity, reducing waste, cutting down costs and delivery times: everything comes as a result. Workers value and recognize when their leaders care about them. And only when we feel part of a work team, we are able to give our best.
Every day, when I finish reading the most urgent emails, I visit each sector of the factory. I meet employees, greet them, and ask how they are doing. I receive their inquiries, questions, concerns, ideas for improvement, and compliments. It is as if we were a big family going through everyday life.
I believe that, even though we can’t avoid difficulties or conflicts, we can listen and discuss them with respect, applying continuous improvement and pursuing what’s best for the good of all.
In these moments when the pandemic challenges each of us and our families, creating a work environment in which people can feel accompanied, safe, and understood makes a big difference.