ANN ARBOR, Mich.—Toyoda Gosei Co. is preparing on multiple fronts for the changing automotive landscape.
The firm has expanded in many areas of its business during the last few years, including its rubber-related operations, but also is working on developing and acquiring the talent necessary to usher TG into the future.
Chairman Tadashi Arashima recently visited the University of Michigan's Ross School of Business, which has partnered with Toyoda Gosei to form a Global Executive Development Program. In its second year, the nine-month program works with senior executives from TG locations globally to help develop leadership talent.
"I think the experience of the University of Michigan combined with our desire to foster global executives and networking, because the company is getting so big," he said. "The key success factor for us is how we utilize our big production base. We're doing basically the same kinds of things in various places, but if they do these in totally different ways then there's no control. We need to coordinate and share best practices, and get rid of any bad practices if we have them. This really helps."
Future leaders, trends
The goal of the program is to further develop leaders who can bring out the best in their work force and continue to elevate TG as a leading global automotive supplier. The second session began in June and includes an expanded number of participants compared to the first.
Developing new talent is key for any industry, but especially so as big changes get closer to the horizon for automotive. Autonomous vehicles currently are being developed—though they are years away from being commercially available—but electric vehicles are here, and Arashima said those types of products bring new opportunities for suppliers like TG.