The Professionals series showcases talented experts who support PayPay Group’s operations. In this issue, we interviewed Kosugi-san, who works in the Enterprise Sales Division. We asked him about the background to his career change, projects that left an impression on him, and what he finds rewarding about his job.
Team 5, Sales Department 1, Enterprise Sales Division 2
After graduating from university, I was engaged in corporate sales at a wholesale trading company specialized in musical instruments for 10 years after working as a sales representative at a home builder. I joined PayPay in March 2022 so I can make a big impact on society.
I Want to Do a Job which Leaves a Big Influence on Society
Please tell us about your background and why you joined PayPay
Prior to joining PayPay, I was in sales only, working for one and a half years at a home builder and for 10 years at a wholesale trading company specialized in musical instruments. Especially at my previous job, I was able to gain a variety of experiences, not only in proposing measures to increase sales, but also in working on product development and approaching a TV show to eventually have my proposal adopted in their program. After 10 years and having been able to do what I wanted to do, I gradually began to think about the next step in my career.
When I saw stores suffering from Covid, I thought that I wanted to do a job which leaves a big impact on the world. As cashlessness progressed, I thought it would be possible to influence society through payments. So, I searched for a job, narrowed down the industry, and ultimately chose PayPay. PayPay services, including peer-to-peer payments and promotional campaigns, are convenient and fun to use, and I often used to hear about the benefits of adopting PayPay in my previous corporate sales activities. Providing a win-win-win relationship between users, merchants, and PayPay was also attractive for me. I felt that I would be able to accomplish my goal at PayPay, which was creating a movement, took the initiative in QR code payments.
What is the mission and work of the Enterprise Sales Division?
Enterprise Sales Division 2 is an organization whose main clients are major merchants, covering retail companies such as convenience stores, supermarkets, drugstores, and consumer electronics retailers. In this division, my team is responsible for the merchants handling furniture, consumer electronics, and 100-yen goods, and we pitch sales promotion measures including PayPay Coupon and do sales activities to get merchants to newly adopt PayPay’s services.
Getting into the Merchant’s Shoes is the Key to Solving Formidable Cases
Which projects made the biggest impression on you?
I would say the PayPay Coupon project implemented at the major retailer I was in charge of last year. This merchant was not positive about our promotion measures and I struggled a lot, so it is a particularly memorable event for me. This project taught me the importance of coordinating perspectives and carefully communicating with stakeholders to ensure the implementation and success of our initiatives.
Holding deep conversations with the merchant enabled me to understand their benchmark and the mission of the representative I was communicating with. I proposed a trial implementation during the Bon holiday season—when many people return to their hometown—involving PICs from several departments of the merchant. They found it effective, so without delay, we held a coupon promotion both online and offline for Black Friday in November. Then we compared the effectiveness during the sale and non-sale periods and were able to demonstrate that the coupons were fully effective even during the peak season, which allowed us to reach our main goal of holding another coupon initiative during the year-end period.
What motivates you and when do you feel a sense of fulfillment?
I get happy when the measures that I have spent a lot of time preparing for are more effective than expected, or when I receive words of appreciation from representatives of partner companies. I also feel a sense of accomplishment when I actually see the promotions I planned in operation at stores. As we have many impactful measures, such as hijacking the TV section of electronics retailers to show PayPay Coupon advertisements on the screens all at once, I can feel like I am doing something worthwhile.
In particular, I sometimes bring proposals to consumer electronics retailers in cooperation with SoftBank, which focuses on mobile and broadband businesses, so it is fun to be able to provide value as a group.
What is the atmosphere like in your department?
We are a colorful bunch. For example, we have someone who used to be an actor, a wedding planner, and who used to work at a manufacturer, so talking with them is very interesting. Their opinions also vary, but we have a culture where we can have a respectful discussion without refuting each other. We all have the common desire to provide services from which both merchants and users can benefit, and I think that is why we can have positive discussions without friction.
Another thing I like about my department is that we can cooperate with each other as we have a mission to promote new initiatives. Most members can operate on their own but we all want to be considerate and help each other out, so we don’t become a gathering of lone wolves.
Did you find anything different than you expected after joining the company?
I honestly felt uneasy about working remotely when I joined because previously I worked fully on site. I had the impression that the relationship between colleagues would be dry and businesslike. But once I started working, I found that the team has a good vibe, as we usually communicate well by chatting in evening meetings and going out for lunch together when we go to the office every other week. PayPay has a mentor system in place so you get to talk every day to your supervisor after joining, and there are also follow-up trainings for mid-career employees, so I never felt isolated. Because we work remotely, we value communication, so I don’t feel anxious at all!
Planning from the User’s Point of View and Following Through for Users
What do you value in your work at PayPay?
In terms of PayPay 5 Senses, “Be sincere to be professional – Be sincere and work as a professional without making any compromise. Create new opportunities and values. Go through till the end.”
I always keep in mind that salespeople are at the closest to users, and I try to work by looking to users, beyond merchants. For example, when designing coupon contents, I try to make proposals while imagining what I would do if I were the user. Even when I encounter obstacles within the company or with merchants as I work on a project, I believe that the most important thing is to follow through with a strong will to pursue a user-centric solution.
What do you hope to accomplish in the future?
The challenge is that the merchants handling high-value products such as home electronics and furniture do not have as many PayPay users as convenience stores and supermarkets do. Our main mission now is to increase users by implementing sales promotion measures (including coupons) while promoting PayPay Credit (former Pay Later). I would like to talk with reps from our partners and run measures that create a win-win-win relationship between users, merchants, and PayPay.
As for me personally, I want to accomplish my goal of expanding the group’s economic zone by introducing PayPay Points at electronics retailers and implementing product-specific coupons which are often requested by merchants!
Finally, any words for job seekers?
PayPay is a company which can make a big influence on society through each employee taking up a challenge. We have an environment where members with various experiences respect each other’s opinions and work as one team to accomplish our goals. I want to see people from diverse backgrounds push their boundaries!
Current job openings
*The recruitment status is current at the time of the interview.