Nintendo on working conditions for its employees
Posted on July 4, 2022 by Brian(@NE_Brian) in General Nintendo, News
One topic that came up during Nintendo’s 82nd Annual General Meeting of Shareholders is working conditions for its employees. President Shuntaru Furukawa and Shigeru Miyamoto both responded.
Furukawa mentioned that Nintendo has “a flexible working schedule” as well as policies “that encourage the use of paid vacation.” That’s along with “improvements in benefits provided to temporary employees” and “a more flexible dress code” that started this year. Furukawa ended his response by stating Nintendo is “discussing strategies to promote the active involvement of women in the workplace.”
You can read Furukawa’s full response below, along with the one from Miyamoto.
We recognize that in order to achieve a good work-life balance, we need to create ways of working that meet the needs of – and work for – each and every individual. To offer a diverse work environment, we have introduced a flexible working schedule and have policies in place that encourage the use of paid vacation. We also have made progress in certain initiatives which include improvements in benefits provided to temporary employees, allowing second- and part-time jobs, and to further expand existing structures for childcare and caregiving.
We also abolished female employee-specific uniforms several years ago, and starting this year we moved to a more flexible dress code that allows employees to choose clothes suitable to their workplace. You may see employees wearing jackets with the Nintendo logo in media articles. We still keep these jackets to remind us that Nintendo is a company that creates products. We’re also discussing strategies to promote the active involvement of women in the workplace.
Thank you for asking such an important question.
When we started making games, we had only a few dozen people in our team. Now we work with thousands. However, even with the number of people working together increasing, I think it is still very important that everyone on the team is engaged. I think that a team functions best when each and every person on the team understands their role, and it is the responsibility of the game directors to ensure this is the case during development. Enabling daily active engagement with their work also connects to providing emotional support for each team member.
In addition, roles often become more divided as companies and organizations grow. However, at Nintendo, we encourage people to act beyond their roles, while looking at the overall picture. We do this because when you try new things, the way you have always done things before might not work anymore, and it is always better to have practiced starting something from scratch. I think this is part of the Nintendo DNA. Every year, I give a lecture to our new employees fresh out of college and our mid-career hires just joining Nintendo. In this lecture, we talk about things like the Nintendo DNA and our unique ways of engaging in work.
Later on, Nintendo was asked about the current percentage of women in management positions and whether female director candidates will emerge from within the company. Furukawa said in response:
“Director candidates are selected based on who would be best for navigating the management of the company, regardless of factors like gender, age, and nationality. We aim to carry out corporate management from a variety of perspectives, and our current Board of Directors includes, as Outside Directors, Asa Shinkawa, who is a woman, and Chris Meledandri, who is a non-Japanese member. As the interests and preferences of the consumers continue to diversify, it is also essential that we leverage a variety of talent to enhance the overall strength of the company as we are in the entertainment business. To that end, we strive to respect and utilize the individual characteristics and strengths of our employees. When it comes to the recruitment of talent, we judge each person on their own qualities regardless of gender. And after joining the company, the compensation system and the like are decided based not on gender, but on the abilities demonstrated by the individual and their contribution to the company. The entire Nintendo group is striving to promote an environment in which female employees can play an active role. In our overseas subsidiaries, female employees are active in important posts including senior management. Women account for 23.7% of management positions when calculated based on the combined numbers for the headquarters in Japan and the subsidiaries in North America, Europe and Australia.
We recognize that there are still many issues to be addressed, such as increasing the number of female managers in Japan, so this is a topic of frequent discussion among the executive management. We will continue to strive to build a work environment where employees from a diverse range of backgrounds and various identities can play a more active role.”