Building long-term, successful careers with UNIQLO Malaysia

By UNIQLO Malaysia

GRADUAN® checks in with Yuki Yamada, CEO of UNIQLO Malaysia and Singapore, on the requirements and traits that talent need to have to be part of this global company.

UNIQLO is a global company that originates in Japan. Aiming to become a truly global company, UNIQLO adopted the motto of “Global is Local, Local is Global”. Its Malaysian business has developed with this motto and it seeks local talent that has a global mindset coupled with the ability to adapt and execute UNIQLO's global business ideas into its local operations. "The world economy is changing every day, it is essential for all employees to have the learning agility, to continuously build the ability to adapt to the ever-changing landscape and seize the opportunity to reflect into the business. Speed is crucial in the current world economy and our parent company’s name – Fast Retailing – could not have encapsulated this better," explains Yuki.

At UNIQLO, the people play an important role in enabling and supporting UNIQLO’s mission in creating great clothing (LifeWear) to enrich the lives of people in the societies that we live in. This widely known organization heavily invests in People and Development by providing regular training, coaching, and opportunities to be involved in business through local and international assignments. As a result of this shared mission, this would position UNIQLO as a global apparel company.

Diversity and Inclusion is an important part of UNIQLO too. "As a global company, we are constantly mindful and it is our policy to provide equal opportunities to all in our hiring and employees in developing their careers with us," Yuki says. This includes its dedicated effort to recruit and develop people with disability (PWD), UNIQLO provides them a conducive work environment and equip them with necessary skills through training.

One of UNIQLO's main pillars is People Development. As part of its training and mentoring program, it organizes a session through which all employees are encouraged to discuss with their leaders about their future career path. Based on their intentions and performance, the company can work with the employee to consider further career opportunities. At the beginning of each new term, goals settings are discussed between employees and their leaders. This allows everyone to have a clear direction on key projects that needed to focus and achievements within an agreed timeline. In terms of performance evaluation, there is a standardized promotion and evaluation processes for all employees. This company adopts full meritocratic principle for all employees when it comes to promotion and career development.

"I joined the company as a UNIQLO Manager Candidate after graduating in 2001 (Management Trainee Program) in a store in Tokyo, Japan," shares Yuki. It was his first job and he was promoted to Store Manager in 2002. In twenty-one years of working for the company, he has gained experience as the General Manager of Flagship store, and as a Store Operations Director in the United Kingdom and the United States. Before moving into his management role as the CEO of Malaysia and Singapore, he had an additional seven years’ experience managing stores in Tokyo, London, and New York. When asked about his career journey in UNIQLO, Yuki explained the opportunity of working in five different countries so far has helped him learn so much about working with people from diverse cultures and backgrounds, and also about the importance of adopting adaptive leadership to garner the support of teams and individuals to work towards the same goals. "More importantly, my experience with the company is direct evidence that people are given good opportunities at the company and building long-term, successful careers with UNIQLO", says Yuki.

Think you have what it takes to be part of this global organization? Join UNIQLO Malaysia at GRADUAN® ASPIRE this 9-12 July and vote them as Malaysia's most preferred employer for the GRADUAN Brand Awards!

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