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How to increase diversity? And watch your business thrive

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We have surveyed Japan’s business leaders in the pharmaceutical industry. Fifty-two percent responded that diversity and inclusion is a top priority, with nearly 40% saying that this is a huge challenge.

Ninety percent of all leaders taking part in the survey identified diversity and inclusion as a major challenge for the next 12 months and beyond. How can you ensure that your company has the best available talent?

“Ninety percent of all leaders taking part in the survey identified diversity and inclusion as a major challenge for the next 12 months”

Diversity and inclusion in Japan for the most part refers to gender, the ratio of females to males in leadership positions.

Like most things in life, we tend to get what we focus on. We achieve what we focus on. We attain what we believe is possible.  We will not lose those pounds or run that marathon or finish the MBA without a plan.  Recruiting is too important to be done poorly.

“Recruiting is too important to be done poorly.”

Get the facts

First, senior management must believe that diversity is great for their business. It is not something nice to have. There must be a clear intention by the business to prioritize diversity and inclusion.  This is not feel-good. It is an ingredient of a champion team if you are going to win, you must have a diverse and dynamic team. Case closed!  It is good for business, plain and simple, and that is backed up with facts and figures.

“It is an ingredient of a champion team if you are going to win.”


Imagine, if you will, that you are the manager of the Tokyo Giants baseball team, and you are looking for a new pitcher next year. What would you do? First, you would know all the pitchers, number 1 and 2, in Japan’s premier Baseball League. The strategy is no different when recruiting your next leader. Who are they? Where are they working now? What are their ages, what are their backgrounds? What are their achievements?

Imagine your firm is launching an immunology product. Imagine, too, that your firm has not been in the immunology space before. How would you prepare? One of the first things you would do would be to find out exactly who the key opinion leaders are.  What is their level and scope of influence? Who do you know? How can you get to know them? What information do they need to know about your product?


Confidentially, skillfully, and tactically, we will find out what their strengths are and what their achievements are.  Quantify and qualify.

The law of attraction

To attract anyone, you must first know what they might be interested in. What is important to them?

“Stereotypes, cliches, and platitudes are just not sufficient to be able to attract the smartest and brightest talent in the market”.  It is too short-sighted and too naive to think that all female candidates are attracted to a work-life balance (is not everyone) or that they have a family. People are more complex. Stereotypes, cliches, and platitudes are just not sufficient to be able to attract the smartest and brightest talent in the market.


Now that you have a list, you have identified the top talent in the market. You can begin to cultivate them. With Morunda’s help, you can start to create a story of why your company should be at the top of the list for the best and brightest in the market.  What is the unique story you would like the candidate market to know about your firm? What is the difference you are making? What are the problems, challenges, and opportunities candidates will face?  The very best candidates want and need a challenge, an obstacle, or a transformation. Where others get scared, these stars are excited.

Who are the candidates that are in the market and not just on the market? You need to know the entire pool of candidates in the market. Timing is everything.  Your firm needs to be in the right place at the right time.  You need to be fishing in the entire pool of candidates, not just in the shallow end.

Ready to hire

Now that you have identified and you have assessed, you understand their needs, and you have a process of cultivating the candidates, you are now ready to have the best opportunity for them to interview for the right position at the right time.

“Who is in the market, not just on the market?”

The right strategy

Recruiting is too important to be done poorly.  Often it seems recruiting is left to the last minute: someone leaves, there is a resignation, a forced retirement, and suddenly a position is open, but an expat cannot come to Japan because of COVID-19. Now the company is left scrambling to fill the gap. They have looked internally; there may be one candidate, possibly two, but they need to benchmark the candidates from without the organization. According to a recent survey conducted by Morunda, over, 90% of executives surveyed are very concerned if a few people left or at least somewhat concerned. It would make sense to have a midterm strategy in place.

About Morunda KK

Morunda KK headquartered in Tokyo is an executive search firm focused on the Pharmaceutical and Medical Device Sector. Established in 2011, we have been helping foreign companies find leaders in Commercial, Medical, Clinical Business Intelligence and Regulatory.

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