August 31, 2022 edition

GMO Internet Group
Venture Spirit Declaration
(SV-Declaration)

The word “venture" can have various meanings.
However, GMO Internet Group defines the word "venture" as a group of people that strives forward without fear of risks, with innovative speed, focus, methods, and intelligence to achieve a dream and aspiration: to create a respected and admired organization that defies the conventions of traditional corporations through the provision of innovative products and services, bringing smiles and inspiration to the customers.
We GMO Internet Group demonstrate our own strength based on the SV-Declaration which we share as if it were a constitution or a pledge.

The following is a declaration of the mindset we have cultivated since our establishment in 1995.
We are a “venture.” While many companies focus on technological strength or management style, the true advantage of a "venture" is the shared spirit among its members.
Traditional management methods that prioritize techniques, skills, and manuals have employed theoretical approach to manage resources. The same goes for the management of human resources, where the norm has been to use a method of control based on profit and fear founded on the idea that humans are inherently evil.
However, we recognize that humans, who are the most important management resources, are emotional creatures. With the right mindset, productivity can increase several times individually or dozens of times with team synergies. Unlike the traditional enterprises, we will nurture the venture spirit in order to expeditiously achieve our collective ambitions.
GMO Internet Group partners will connect people, businesses, and society to grow as a truly inspiring organization with full motivation and capabilities. The spirit to be shared is as follows.

Dream
What are we committed to?

To be the dominant No.1 in the Internet industry.
Be happy, successful, and No.1.
Happiness to us means having peace of mind, satisfaction, and the joy of achieving goals.
Success to us means fulfilling our lives both emotionally and materially while creating smiles and inspiring others in our society.
Being No.1 to us is not about external competition, but about mastering your own self.

Internet for Everyone

We aim to be a Total Person in the three levels of life to achieve well-being:
Fundamental (health, mind, and learning), Actualization (work-life balance), and Results (financial success). Work together to achieve our social and professional dreams of becoming No.1.

Vision
How do we achieve success?

Amidst the Digital and ICT revolution, we must concentrate our resources on developing Internet infrastructure that supports our products and services while bringing smiles and inspiration to our customers. As a result, we will achieve greater profits.

Philosophy
Why do we exist?

Our mission is to contribute to the society by enriching the Internet experiences, creating new Internet cultures and industries, and bringing smiles and inspiration to our customers.

Business Mindset
Guiding Rules and Principles

Premise

  1. Let us strive to be No1. in the internet industry. Do not engage in areas where we can’t be No.1.
  2. Surround ourselves with human talent who agree with our dream, vision, philosophy, business mindset and objectives.
  3. Plan all quantitative objectives based on the 55-Year Plan.
  4. Refer to the 10 Key Values for Achieving Objectives and GMO Style Lanchester Strategy for progress management and marketing.
  5. Digital and ICT revolution! Be proud and excited to be experiencing an industrial revolution that only happens once every few hundred years. Seize this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity!
  6. Remember the excitement when you first used the Internet.
  7. Pay attention to the world and provide new technologies, values, and concepts that are convenient and easy to use for everyone.
  8. Remember that our mission is to help grow the Internet and bring smiles and inspiration to our customers.
  9. All of our services must be No.1 with superior specifications, pricing, and design compared to our competitors.
  10. Always think. Don't repeat the same thing without analyzing. To stop thinking is to stop growing.
  11. Enhance our strengths. Develop No.1 services in the weaker segments.
  12. Business is like a battle. Arm ourselves with pride and No.1 services to provide inspiration and spread "Smiles" to customers.
  13. The No.1 services and proud partners are our corporate brand themselves, and prerequisites for successful TV ads and billboards.
  14. The internet era is an era of empathy. Let us grow to be relatable as a company and an individual.
  15. The feeling of empathy arises from a combination of logic and emotion. No.1 creativity is just as important as providing No.1 services.
  16. A company is a means to make everyone happy, including partners, shareholders, and customers. Our barometer is the number of smiling faces.
  17. Offer the best hospitality to everyone we engage with, not just our customers so that they will become our fans.
  18. The true character of a person or company surfaces at the time of payment. Show humility and gratitude when making payments, which are the principle of true merchants.
  19. Be mindful that the opportunity to be materially and emotionally happy is right in front of us.
  20. Eliminate any kind of prejudice on the grounds of race, nationality, gender, educational background, language, religion, or any other factors. Value people for their ability and merits.
  21. Provide systems and an environment where engineers and creative professionals can collaborate and strive together to remain No.1.
  22. Engineers and creative professionals are valuable assets to our group. No.1 service will reduce the reliance on sales and support activities. Their ability to create and develop new values fuel innovation.
  23. Make everything with the utmost style, grace, and intuitiveness!

Spirit

  • Business always has a focal point, like the center pin in a bowling game. Aim for maximum efficiency with minimum power.
  • Manage with speed and focus - do not derail. Remember that business is about perseverance.
  • Adhere to the SKKR values:
    Proactiveness: Initiate positive change (Sekkyokuteki)
    Collaboration: Work together (Kyoryokuteki)
    Confidence: Seize the opportunity (Kouteiteki)
    Optimism: Think positively (Rakkanteki)
  • Transform our knowledge into wisdom. Think positively and find ways to make things happen rather than making excuses.
  • Priority, priority, priority. Base your actions on two matrices: "Revenue Maximization vs Cost Control" and "Urgency vs Importance".
  • Lead by example. Inspiration will lead to action.
  • We would not be standing here without everything that supports us. Stay appreciative and grateful.
  • State conclusions first.
  • GMO Internet Group is one big family. Be kind and considerate, and call each other Group companies, partners, or members.
  • Don't hesitate to ask for help and offer whatever advice you can give.
  • GMO Internet Group is characterized by our positive, smiling, and confident members. Boost the team spirit with positive tones.
  • Greetings make people smile. Greet customers and colleagues cheerfully. Be the No.1 organization in terms of greetings as well.
  • Recognize the joy of being alive and of being appreciated by others for bringing smiles and inspiration to our customers.
  • Apologize and be honest whenever you become aware of a mistake or failure.
  • Difficulties are opportunities for growth. Rise to the challenge.

Learning

  • The workplace is a place that fosters professional development.
  • Nothing is impossible. Making comparison leads to ideas. Investigate, research, and learn.
  • Strive for thorough recruitment, training and onboarding.
  • Take notes. Share all the data including information and research materials through the NASA System.

Objectives

  • Our objectives consist of:
    • 1. Revenue/profit targets and quantifiable actions based on the 55-Year Plan (10 Trillion Yen in revenue and 1 Trillion Yen in profit by 2051).
    • 2. Sharing of SV-Declaration
    • 3. "Smiles" and "Inspirations" as a result of the above
  • Surround ourselves with human talents who set and take ownership of achieving goals.
  • Business requires backward planning. Start with the objectives and end-goals.
  • Goals without deadlines do not exist. Setting deadlines turns actions into focused tasks.
  • Set deadlines to the minute (ex. by Friday 6:59pm). "By the end of the day/week" is not a deadline. Do not use phrases like "in progress" or "to be confirmed" as they are nothing but excuses.
  • Use numbers to monitor objectives. Check and report on quantitative progress every day.
  • Evaluations are based on growth and achievement of the goals rather than financial results.
  • Accept the outcome, whether achieved or not, as part of your performance.

Knowledge

  • Well-managed work-from-home is a competitive strength. Increase motivation and productivity by maintaining exercise routines and communication.
  • Adopt cutting-edge technology, values, and expertise that defy convention.
  • Deliver messages concisely. Do not waste other people's time.
  • Keep slogans succinct. Use intuitive visuals and large fonts for presentations.
  • Adopt gamification into every action.
  • Monitor your competitors every day. When a competitor differentiates themselves in the market, counterattack with a "Meet" on the same day. "Meet" means to offer conditions that are superior in specifications and price than the competitor, even if only slightly. If this cannot be done immediately, announce the projected launch date. Do not be the boiling-frog!
  • Insights are available everywhere at the operational level, from improvements in advertising and website strategy to all kinds of customer feedback. When the reported figures contradict assumptions, investigate at the operational level to determine the cause.
  • Use the AARRR Pirate Metrics to break down performance in terms of Acquisition, Activation, Retention, Referral, and Revenue for each service. Visualize numerical data in real-time charts and graphs. Use graphs to plan, conduct rapid A/B testing, and make improvements in a PDCA cycle. Increase the speed of improvement. Improving 0.2% a day leads to a 200% improvement a year later.
  • Actions can have compounding effects. For example, a sales effort without referrals or customer support with no FAQ only yields one-off returns. Invest in actions with compounding effects to achieve exponential growth.
  • Assess every action in a logical and quantitative manner (C for Check in PDCA). Always use the results for further improvement.
  • Do not rely solely on your instincts. Rather, listen to your customers and partners. Make unbiased decisions based on quantitative data and survey results with an open mind.
  • Design surveys with an even number of response options to clarify whether respondents agree or disagree. Always include a free text field.
  • Our target is the untapped markets. Accumulate organizational theories and operational knowledge.
  • Study rules and systems that enable the organization to function autonomously.
  • A strong organization carries the ability to enable its partners to carry out a decision thoroughly, a quality which further strengthens organizations.
  • Negotiate directly with key decision makers, not through others.
  • Improve efficiency by holding regular meetings with non-GMO companies or "Keep-Up Meetings" internally. Start each meeting by 1) reading the slogan out loud, 2) checking attendance, and 3) going over the TODO items from the previous meeting. End each meeting by deciding 1) new TODO items, 2) deadlines, and 3) the next meeting date. Make sure to send the minutes to all participants.
  • People tend to procrastinate. The key to getting things done fast is to set multiple small deadlines. Four 15-minute meetings over the course of a month is four times as effective as a 1-hour meeting once a month.
  • Examine each transaction slip when conducting a cost review. Do not rely solely on spreadsheets and financial reports.
  • Employ time management (prioritization) strategies.
  • Withholding information to yourself hinders collaboration. Mitigate key-person dependency risk. Keep all information transparent, including goals, results, rewards, and knowledge.
  • Compile and share best practices.
  • We all make mistakes. Implement RPAs for tasks that can be automated and GMO Checklist for all other tasks to prevent human error. Create a new checklist for all failed tasks.
  • Take a shortcut to success by taking advantage of the group's accumulated managerial knowledge. Learn the secrets from the Success Bible.
  • Keep your workstation tidy and clean. Small things like this make a big difference if done collectively.

Believe in our potential

  • Embrace change. You can and will change. Change begins with the mind.
  • The key to gaining more fans is to become a fan yourself. Work on your communication skills.
  • We will never face a problem that we cannot overcome. We have never faced a problem on a 100 Trillion-Yen scale. All the problems we face require a bit of effort to be resolved. You will not face a problem beyond your capabilities in the first place.
  • Combine ideas. The pencil with an eraser is another great invention that will go down in history.

Be a Role Model

  • Figures (number of “Smiles”) represent popularity. Strive to build a fan base.
  • Laugh, cry and express your feelings. Be inspired by everything around you.
  • It is important to be able to get excited about the achievement of your own, team, company, and group goals.
  • Congratulate others wholeheartedly when they achieve their goals.
  • Be conscious of the power of words. They can have unintended effects. Choose your words wisely.
  • Be courteous and polite. Show your respect in your actions. Make eye contact when greeting others and use appropriate language.
  • Habits define 90% of our actions. Let us all acquire good habits.

Let's make history together by upholding this SV-Declaration!