Read on to hear Masako share a compelling narrative as the Director of the Diverse Abilities Planning Group in the Human Resources Division of our firm in Japan.
Masako works on projects to train leaders with disabilities in developing countries and their vision for educating all team members on disability issues to create an environment where everyone can thrive in diverse roles at Deloitte.
In April of 2023, I joined the Human Resources Division of our firm in Japan as the Director of the Diverse Abilities Planning Group. My primary role is to promote employment opportunities and active participation for team members with disabilities. As someone with cerebral palsy, I am deeply committed to leveraging my disability to raise awareness and empower individuals with disabilities. I use an electric wheelchair and rely on my PC due to difficulties with pen and paper. Communicating my accessibility needs to my colleagues and office management has been crucial, and I am grateful for the firm's willingness to accommodate those needs.
While our firm in Japan is making efforts to hire individuals with disabilities, there have been limited team members with physical disabilities like wheelchair users and hearing or visual impairments. There's room for improvement in this regard, and I hope to work on it.
In my view, an inclusive workplace hinges on three key elements: being barrier-free, offering reasonable accommodations, and fostering understanding among all team members.
A barrier-free environment allows me to navigate the office freely, while reasonable accommodations, such as adjusting my workstation or flexible work hours, enhance my performance. When team members feel understood and supported, it boosts motivation and loyalty.
One of the most gratifying experiences in my career has been working on projects to train leaders with disabilities in developing countries. Many of these nations lack accessibility, but my interactions with individuals with disabilities there filled them with energy and hope. I believe that empowerment is vital, and I'm proud to have served as a role model for them.
Looking ahead, I believe it is crucial to educate all team members on disability issues and create an environment where people with disabilities can thrive in diverse roles and build meaningful careers here at Deloitte.