100 Next-Era Leaders in Asia 2016-2017 -The region's best brightest, most promising-

Tokyo Shin Kenso

President Shiro Kurosaki

Message to young people
Don’t be disheartened or give up because of something trivial. It is important to think about what you are doing, and to progress through trial and error. Above all, I want you to show your gratitude to you parents, your family and other people around you.

This company was founded by my father. I didn’t have the chance to work with him as he died when I was 15. I joined the company when I was 23 and was already the candidate to succeed my father even though I was the youngest worker at the company. No one at work liked the idea of me taking over. I was ready for that, to some extent, but I worked very hard every day to gain the older workers’ trust. I didn’t get much sleep for a year after starting the job, reading over and over catalogues and specialty books, and reviewing filings and documents from senior workers.

A year later, I was familiar with the technical terms of the industry, and had sufficient knowledge and skills to prepare a quotation by myself. After that, I tried to meet as many people as possible to grasp what was required for a successful business career. My uncle was responsible for managing the company, so, I devoted myself to marketing and improving my skills every day. I reported to him what I had done every night after finishing up the day’s work. I learned corporate management from him in sessions that lasted late into the night or until the following morning. He passed away when I was 30.

At around that time, I was recommended for an executive position at a company that had businesses with a major general contractor. With the move, I decided to take the president’s position at my company. Back then, old regimes dominated the construction industry and a young president earned little respect from the older officials. And, I, too, didn’t want to be a president until I had enough experience to gain the respect from my seniors because I didn’t want to hear them saying, “he became the president only because he was the successor of the company founder.”

Even after I became president, the work remained the same as before, but the working environment changed significantly. I had many chances to talk to people I never had done before, and the way people approached me and their attitude toward me all of a sudden changed a lot, both in a good sense and a bad sense, simply because of my new title. Above all, I couldn’t sleep because of the significant pressure of the responsibilities of my position. I had no one to talk to about it as my father, my uncle and my grandmother were all gone. I couldn’t talk about it to my mother or to my employees, either, and it was a very difficult time for me.

But I made up my mind and I believed I could do it. I was determined to be successful, whatever the cost. Then things started to turn around slowly. I had good customers and contracts, committed business partners and support companies, and a wonderful workforce. The company was progressing in the way I wanted. Now I am doing businesses with gratitude every day. From here on, I will be trying to raise customer satisfaction, and supplying safer and higher-quality products to new customers as well.

Company Profile

Tokyo Shin Kenso
Interior/exterior reform