Get to Know the People Science Team: Kenji Matsumoto
Title: People Science Consultant
Home town: The greater Tokyo area, near Yokohama, Japan
Kenji Matsumoto’s career shows the benefits of combining more than one area of expertise. Originally an architectural engineer, he shifted his focus from large-scale construction projects to invest two decades in human resources. Today, his engineering background gives him a unique perspective as Lead People Science Consultant at Glint.
“I love uncovering the underlying behaviors and systems affecting engagement,” Kenji says. “My design mindset helps me enable organizations to help their employees become their best.”
With his engineering background and HR experience, Kenji empowers organizations to better understand engagement concepts and more quickly act on them.
Learn more about Kenji’s work and life.
What’s your specialty on the People Science Team? I’m a Lead People Science Consultant in Japan.
What got you interested in People Science? By applying my engineering background to complex and ambiguous concepts, I make it easier for people to understand them. I love helping organizations understand the connection between behaviors and systems and employee engagement. The more readily organizations grasp these concepts, the faster they can make decisions and take actions that help their employees become their best selves.
How did you get to Glint? I was a Glint user prior to joining Glint. I was Head of HR for a company that was acquired by a competitor using Glint. I started using Glint’s platform four times a year. It was quite a change from running an annual survey. But after a few surveys, I was using Glint’s real-time data to show the leadership team how employees were feeling and to support what I believed needed to be done.
What’s your motivation for doing what you do? I want to make a difference in the lives of others so that’s where I devote my time, talent, and resources. I love data mining and uncovering what affects employee engagement. It’s like finding a gold nugget as a miner. I dig to find the truth, knowing it will make a difference for an organization.
Any career goals you’re working toward? Now that we are working remotely, I think about working from someplace like Hawaii. I would love to work someplace that feels like I am living the resort life when I shut down my computer.
What has been a big learning moment in your career? I was undergoing my job search during the pandemic. I honestly felt I would never find my dream job under these circumstances. But I learned the importance of staying open to whatever might come my way. I was searching for a job on LinkedIn, and “Lead People Science Consultant, Japan” showed up on my Job Alerts. After a series of interviews, I landed my dream job.
What’s your top tip? Be open to what unfolds right in front of you, and you might be surprised at what comes your way. According to the Planned Happenstance Theory by Stanford professor John Krumboltz, people who are curious, persistent, optimistic, flexible, and risk-taking are more likely to capitalize on chance events and turn serendipity into opportunity.
Where are you from? I grew up in the greater Tokyo area, near Yokohama, and that’s also where I live now. On weekends, I run along the ocean, enjoying the sight of sailboats and surfers, and Mount Fuji in the background. It is so relaxing to jog along the coast, taking in fresh air and the beautiful scenery.
What was your first job? After I graduated from college with a degree in architectural engineering, I joined a construction firm in Japan. I was assigned to the Malaysia International Airport and International Airport in the Philippines. I loved those great experiences working overseas.
How many cups of coffee do you drink per day? I cannot drink coffee and alcohol because I’m allergic. I drink two liters of water and some green tea every day.
What do you like to do outside of work? I love running every day—it makes me feel healthy and gives me energy. I run about 200 kilometers (120 miles) a month. I plan to run in the Tokyo Marathon in 2021! I even engineer my marathon training schedules to improve my speed and endurance.