Leaders July 2013

Unleashing Creativity

An open, creative and diverse workplace is key for creativity, making future leaders, and driving the economy

“There is no doubt that creativity is the most important human resource of all. Without creativity, there would be no progress, and we would be forever repeating the same patterns”.

Edward de Bono
Maltese physician, author, inventor and consultant

The UK and Japan share a rich creative heritage that includes architects, musicians, filmmakers, video game developers, fashion designers and technologists across a broad range of industries.

Japanese contemporary culture influences and fascinates people far from these shores. Its glow has pull particularly among those in younger generations.

According to a UK survey, Japan is the world’s most creative country, and Tokyo the city in which most creativity blooms. And, of course, Japan’s appreciation of quality, authenticity and originality provides massive business opportunities for products that are made in the UK.

But is Japan making the most of this brilliance? Or could it do better?

In this context, we are constantly being reminded of the need to foster creative thinking and encourage innovation in both schools and the workplace.

Just as firms must compete internationally, global competition is intensifying for all graduates. The debate in Japan’s education-related circles is ongoing.

At the chamber, we like to believe we are providing a platform that will allow new things to develop. Be it inspiration sparked by a thought leader or connections which are made, that kernel of an idea could mean the start of a new business venture.

The British Business Awards (BBA) were developed to recognise the successes of our members and their contribution to the UK–Japan relationship.

Nomination categories for this year’s BBA will be published on the BCCJ website later this month, but there’s one special prize I’d like to draw to your attention.

This year, we’re very happy to announce a new award category for Global Talent, sponsored by the British Council Japan.

Global talent development—perhaps better known as global jinzai—is currently a buzzword in Japan’s business community. It is recognised as one of the key challenges facing Japanese business when it comes to overseas expansion.

At the BCCJ, we believe that an open, creative and diverse workplace with equal opportunities is key in developing creativity, creating future leaders, and driving the economy.

The British Council award will recognise corporate contributions to the cultivation and development of global talent within Japan.

Please visit the BCCJ website for information on how to prepare nominations for all BBA categories, including the Company of the Year and UK–Japan Partnership.

We’re looking forward to helping you share and celebrate your achievements.

As we head into summer, I would like to extend my best wishes to those who will be travelling during the holiday season. And gambatte to those who suffer due to the humidity and heat of the Japanese summer.