Team Panasonic: Progress powered by passion
Team Panasonic: Progress powered by passion
For over 100 years, one of Panasonic’s core guiding principles has been “contribution to society.” This represents our devotion to societal progress and a commitment to serve the communities in which we operate. To put it simply, we believe in the promise and power of technology to improve people’s lives.
Of course, our ability to contribute positively to the world can only be achieved through the combined efforts of dedicated individuals who are united in common purpose, including our employees, our customers and our partners. That’s why we’re so excited about the creation of Team Panasonic, a diverse group of world-class athletes that share Panasonic’s passion for excellence and making the world a better place.
Announced at CES 2020, Team Panasonic features Olympic gold medalists Michael Phelps and Katie Ledecky, Paralympic silver medalist Lex Gillette and Olympic hopeful Sakura Kokumai. Together, our shared social purpose is to empower the next generation to achieve their dreams through sports, education and healthy living.
United in what moves us forward
At first glance, it might seem as though a world-class athlete and a global technology company don’t have much in common. And yet the thing that moves us is the same: A passionate commitment to continual improvement. Whether you’re an engineer trying to develop sustainable technologies or an athlete training to win a gold medal at the Olympics, the mindset needed to achieve progress is the same.
Michael Phelps spoke about what moves him during a recent talk at CES 2020 with Panasonic CMO Lauren Sallata. When asked how he was able to accomplish so much in his swimming career and become the most decorated Olympian of all time, Phelps emphasized the importance of having a dream you feel passionate about.
"I figured out a dream that got me excited to get out of bed every day, that got me into a cold pool at times," Phelps said. From there, it was all about creating a plan and executing on it. "It's not rocket science – it's just training a lot of hours. But the dream is what’s going to help you on days when you don’t want to get out of bed."
Seven-time USA national karate champion Sakura Kokumai, who hopes to compete in the Olympic Games later this year, also spoke about what moves her. For her, Panasonic's core principle of "untiring effort for improvement" resonated, reflecting her personal philosophy on how to achieve greatness.
"My goal as an athlete is to do something a little bit better every day – to set small, achievable goals and work towards them with patience and determination. Over time, those little victories add up to something big," Kokumai said. "I learned that this mindset can be applied to academics, work, everyday life… and I think that mentality has gotten me to where I am."
For Lex Gillette, a Paralympic silver medalist in the long jump who lost his sight at a young age, cooperation and team spirit are essential elements of progress and success. "Being connected with like-minded people who can challenge you and help push you to that next level is key," he told us. "When you start meshing with people like that, you’re able to do amazing things."
Gillette also noted parallels between the team-oriented mindset that moves him forward and that which moves us forward as an organization. "With Panasonic, you've been around for more than a hundred years – and you can totally see that when people with diverse strengths come together, they can achieve massive things and change the world."
A shared vision of a better world
Of course, Team Panasonic is about more than celebrating success in athletics – it’s also about contributing to society in meaningful ways. By partnering with Olympic and Paralympic athletes who are committed to giving back and helping others, we have the opportunity to help power programs that they are passionate about.
As part of the partnership, Panasonic will sponsor the Michael Phelps Foundation’s IM Program, which encourages a healthy and active lifestyle through water safety courses, recreational pool activities and wellness education. We’ll be helping to support the expansion of the program to new Boys & Girls Club locations across the country.
"I started the Michael Phelps Foundation in 2008 because I wanted to give back. I wanted to give every child the opportunity to chase their goals and dreams," explained Phelps. "This next chapter [following my swimming career] is about saving a life – for me, that’s way more important than ever winning a gold medal."
Panasonic will also sponsor Dive In, Katie Ledecky’s new program aimed at advancing STEM education. Dive In engages middle and high school students on the topics of STEM career exploration and entrepreneurship – topics that reflect the creative ideals of Stanford University, where Ledecky currently attends college and trains.
Though best known for her success in the pool as a 15-time world champion and five-time Olympic gold medalist, Ledecky notes that education has always been her number one priority. "My education has always been very important to me,” she said, noting that her family has a rich history of valuing education. "My grandpa came over to the United States in the 1940s on an educational scholarship, and he really believed in the opportunities that our country would provide him. I have another grandfather who was a doctor in World War II, and I have a number of family members who are now doctors, nurses and professionals in other science fields. And now, as part of my psychology major at Stanford, I’m working on scientific research with a focus on health mindsets. So STEM fields have always interested me."
With Dive In, she hopes to be able to share that passion for education – and specifically STEM – with as many students as possible. "Even if I’ve inspired one young kid, that’s meaningful to me. I’m hoping that this program can spread and grow to a lot of young people."
Ultimately, Team Panasonic is about uniting in common purpose towards a shared vision of a better world. "Panasonic is a mission-driven company with a good reputation for giving back to communities and helping people,” said Ledecky, "so to be able to partner with them is really exciting."
Celebrating the spirit of progress
At Panasonic, we know there is nothing more vital than the power to help better the world. Through the intelligent integration of physical products with new digital technologies and solutions, we are creating platforms, partnerships and personalization that empower lifestyle updates and create better experiences – both for individuals and for society.
With the introduction of Team Panasonic, we are proud to align ourselves with athletes who represent our company’s ideals: cooperation, discipline, team spirit, dedication to excellence and a commitment to giving back. Through these partnerships, we aim to inspire the youth of today to dream big – and to help them achieve their dreams by providing them with the tools they need to succeed in the global 21st century.
"At the end of the day, we want to make the world a better place," said Gillette. "It's our responsibility to work towards a better future for everyone."
Learn more about what moves us.