Members of the Japan chapter of the International Association of Workforce Professionals are working with the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare to promote better and more family-friendly working conditions.
To further this effort, a group of young Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare employees produced a video highlighting the “IkuBoss” – “Iku” stands for “ikuji,” which means raising a child, and an IkuBoss is a boss who takes initiative in creating a workplace environment supportive of work-life balance.
The Minister of Health, Labor and Welfare, as well as other senior staff, recently made IkuBoss Declarations. On their desks, they display “IkuBoss Declaration Pyramid,” created by a project team of young employees at the Ministry.
The video features vignettes highlighting IkuBoss in situations such as: assigning additional work at quitting time, being considerate of work-life balance of staff members, and understanding that childcare leave and responsibility are not just for women.
The video closes with this statement from Yasuhisa Shiozaki, Minister of Health, Labour and Welfare (holding the IkuBoss Declaration Pyramid), “Let’s work together to bring about a better working environment for everyone. Our Ministry will continue to try our best to achieve this goal.”
Mr. Shiozaki’s statement is followed by IkuBoss Declarations from other Ministry employees, including the most senior staff members such as: State Ministers of Health, Labour and Welfare; Parliamentary Vice-Ministers of Health, Labour and Welfare; Administrative Vice-Ministers of Health, Labour and Welfare.
- I will highly value those who pursue efficiency and do not stay in office longer than necessary.
- I will not to assign new tasks to my subordinates on weekends or in out-of-office hours (as far as possible).
- I will become a role model by not lingering in the office for no purpose and leaving as early as possible.
- I will never ever say, “Why should a man take a childcare leave?”
- I am ready to listen and give advice to my subordinates on any issues.