Enhancing the Ability to Contribute to Solving Social Issues through Education
Fostering Human Resources Who Are Aware of Social Issues and Who Can Think and Act on Their Own to Create and Broaden Products to Enhance Sustainability
Promoting Education to Enhance the Ability to Solve Social Issues
In working to realize a sustainable society, SEKISUI CHEMICAL Group pursues growth in sales and operating profit through its contribution to solving social issues while advancing management that maintains an awareness of management’s ability to sustain business.
With a focus on fostering the ability of our employees to contribute to solving social issues, we provide education that enables them to think in ways that connect to management’s ability to sustain business and profit creation potential in a bid to create and expand markets for Products to Enhance Sustainability.
Concept for Promoting Education over the Long Term
In addition to spurring the growth of our employees through experience in their current positions, we have continued to provide education that fosters an awareness of problem-solving and the ability to act from the current Medium-term Plan (2020-2022) that began in 2020.
On top of knowledge-based education, by having our employees spearhead activities premised on solving social issues (=SDGs), we will work to transform employee consciousness and also encourage a change in behavior through activities (=SDGs contribution activities) that improve the ability to contribute to solving social issues.
Figure 1: Schematic view of education to increase the ability to contribute to solving social issues.
To increase its ability to contribute to solving social issues, the Group believes it is important to improve its levels of knowledge and action, which are organized into eight categories (four knowledge and four action). We are promoting education and activities that reinforce the weak points and expand on the strong points, while confirming how these knowledge and action capabilities are improving through education, activities, and other programs.
Figure 2: Knowledge and action items required of personnel who contribute to solving social issues
Concept of Education for Enhancing the Ability to Contribute to Solving Social Issues in the Environmental Medium-term Plan
A program to assist the transformation to hands-on action
The current Medium-term Plan (2020-2022) is positioned as the input stage for awareness, understanding, action and producing outcomes for each social issue. After confirming the effects of this input stage, steps will be taken to transition toward education and the development stage. This entails becoming aware, participating in planning, knowing, understanding, considering, taking action, and creating solutions to social and environmental issues. Through these stages, we will nurture the human resources that generate results and contribute to social and environmental solutions through our business and corporate activities.
The results of the previously mentioned human resources indicator are being used to confirm whether human resources have the knowledge and ability to take action necessary to contribute to solving social issues in efforts to promote human resources development. This indicator allows us to identify strengths and weaknesses in knowledge and actions related to social and environmental issues.
Effective human resource development is implemented by promoting educational programs that reinforce weaknesses and develop strengths according to the results.
Application of the Ability to Contribute to Solving Social Issues Indicators for Personnel
We created a human resource awareness indicator to serve as a rough gauge of individual progress, so as to ascertain the status of the knowledge and actions that employees will require to solve social issues, and to encourage individuals to engage in self-study. We began applying this indicator starting in fiscal 2021.
During the first half of fiscal 2021, we reviewed the ability of employees to contribute to solving social issues that is required to create peace of mind for the future to support the basis of LIFE and realize a sustainable society (Vision 2030).
Although this review relied upon self-assessments, by periodically questioning our employees’ own awareness of the extent to which they are familiar with knowledge and whether they take action that helps solve issues, this effort measures the degree to which self-awareness regarding contributions to solving social issues has increased. As self-awareness increases, employees become able to act with an awareness of their contribution to solving social issues as part of their work.
The results of the first Ability to Contribute to Solving Social Issues Review, which will serve as a benchmark for the future, are as follows:
- Group-wide average: 41 points (benchmark for the current Medium-term Plan)
- Strengths (high-scoring items)
Knowledge:Consideration of social issues throughout product lifecycles
Action:Belief that individual work forms a part of the Group’s efforts to solve social issues”
- Weaknesses (low-scoring items)
Knowledge:Product sustainability ratings (Products to Enhance Sustainability)
Evolution of the product system (Products to Enhance Sustainability)
Action:Conceive of ways to solve new social and environmental issues
Take action upon considering what is necessary after setting future goals
Based on the results of this review, we believe that it is fairly common for employees to consider social issues throughout product lifecycles, and to recognize the link between their own work and the solutions for social issues. Meanwhile, we determined that areas regarding knowledge that should be improved include instilling an awareness of the Products to Enhance Sustainability system, while areas regarding action that should be improved include discovering social issues and thinking from a long-term perspective. Therefore, we will deliver educational programs to reinforce these areas going forward.
Enhancing the Ability to Contribute to Solving Social Issues through Education Programs (content implemented in 2021)
Instructional booklet and e-learning about social issues and the Group’s efforts to grapple with them
In 2021, we conducted programs to reinforce low-scoring areas (weaknesses) on the Ability to Contribute to Solving Social Issues Review that was undertaken for employees in Japan.
1) Published an instructional booklet covering social issues
The first step in thinking about social issues and taking action is knowing what social issues are present in today’s world and what actions the Group is taking to resolve them. In 2020, we published an instructional booklet intended to help employees understand environmental issues, whereas in 2021 we published an instructional booklet covering Extending Healthy Lifespans, which received a low score on the Ability to Contribute to Solving Social Issues Review. In addition, to deepening understanding of the content of the instructional booklet, we implemented e-learning in parallel with the publication of the instructional booklet.
2) e-learning covering various types of thinking, including backcast thinking
As a result of the 2021 Ability to Contribute to Solving Social Issues Review, we discovered that employees were not taking action founded on backcast thinking, whereby individuals take action upon considering what is necessary after setting future goals. In order to reinforce this weakness, we also conducted an e-learning program using a role-playing format intended to provide employees with an awareness of trends in different ways of thinking, including backcast thinking, and to combine these and use these appropriately on an individual basis depending on the situation.
Instructional booklet covering social issues
Extending Healthy Lifespans
e-learning to educate employees on different types of
thinking, including backcast thinking