Women at Rakuten: Raiha

Section Manager
Tohoku Sales Section No.1
Rakuten Mobile, Inc.

Coordinating with business partners and various Rakuten divisions is key for managers

I am in charge of process management in the department that promotes the construction of mobile phone base stations needed to connect mobile networks, from negotiating installation with property owners to signal transmission. In the course of implementing these processes, we face various issues. As a manager, I address those issues while discussing them with team members and business partners, and manage day-to-day progress with the goal of building base stations safely, securely and speedily.

I have a wide range of responsibilities. For example, the installation of base stations consists of numerous processes after we receive the go-ahead from property owners, such as pre-construction surveys, careful reviews of contract content, arrangements for construction material, process verification, the start and completion of construction, and adjustments to signal transmission. My role is to manage all these processes.

Raiha feels a strong sense of achievement and satisfaction when all the processes required of her role are completed.
Raiha feels a strong sense of achievement and satisfaction when all the processes required of her role are completed.

Because our work involves three parties, namely the property owner, the construction company and Rakuten Mobile, we occasionally encounter unforeseen issues before installation is completed. Since the departments in charge differ from process to process and encompass a broad range, I am required to be a strong coordinator and need the results of my work to lead directly to quantifiable figures. My job comes with a great deal of responsibility, but that’s what gives me such a strong sense of achievement and satisfaction when all the processes are completed.

Some things can only be achieved when we’re united as One Team

Rakuten Mobile was established in January 2018. In November of the same year, I was reassigned from Rakuten Ichiba to my current division. In just my third year with the company, I was asked to manage a team of 40 people. I’m sure that assigning management duties to someone relatively new to Rakuten was a challenging decision for the company. While Rakuten offers training tailored to the duration and stage of each employee’s career, the corporate culture encourages learning on the job. I was also trained through the cycle of doing, thinking, taking action, reflecting and doing again.

Of my initial team members, 35 were new university graduates and five were reassigned from other business units. Given everyone’s varying degrees of experience and the wide range of duties involved, I sensed how difficult it would be for everyone to strive for the same objective while keeping speed in mind.

When we started working together, I realized there was only so much that can be achieved by one person, and learned first-hand how important it is to communicate openly about the work process. By relaying things in my own words rather than simply passing on orders from management, my team members’ motivation and attitude towards their work changed. More importantly, I made it a point to delegate rather than attempt to do everything on my own. As a result, we reached our goals for that year. That was also the moment I had a real sense of my team’s growth and satisfaction in my work. The members of my team who had just joined Rakuten Mobile out of college at the time now help drive the company forward, and this makes me unbelievably proud.

One of the values we share across the board as employees of Rakuten is solidarity. When we tackle a challenge in a field where we have no experience, we come together as One Team to pool our knowledge, insight and experience to pursue the same goal. Our values act as an extremely powerful driving force in accomplishing our objectives. I believe that cultivating the mindset of my team members leads to the growth of the entire team — and my personal growth.

Raiha believes that one of the key values Rakuten employees share is solidarity.
Raiha believes that one of the key values Rakuten employees share is solidarity.

Rakuten provides an environment that encourages taking on new challenges, regardless of your background

Rakuten provides plenty of self-learning opportunities. Last year, I attended a pair of talk sessions on women’s leadership and empowerment. I found myself especially struck by the guest speaker’s comment that leadership is about “the capability to cope.” That prompted me to rethink what my own style of leadership is, and proved to be a great opportunity for me to broaden my insight. Regular events and seminars allow me to gain new knowledge, deepen my existing knowledge and help me grow as a person.

Ever since I was a student, I have been active in studying diversity and inclusion. In the future, I hope to do my part to create an environment where our members can take advantage of their individual abilities. At Rakuten Mobile, our employees with different backgrounds go about their day-to-day duties working towards a shared goal. One such example is a new employee straight out of university and a veteran hailing from the telecom industry forming a team with engineers in India and engaging in a discussion aimed at installing antennas. Being present in such situations genuinely makes me feel that we have an environment where anyone can take on challenges regardless of nationality, age, gender or years worked at Rakuten.

This openness, which provides our employees with opportunities to play an active role if they simply show their enthusiasm and willingness, is an attractive point of the Rakuten Group and highlights the kind of diversity that it offers.

For more information on career opportunities, click here.

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