Kazuhiko Ban


Independent Agent


True ninja blood, the champion beetle collector of Koka, or how I once spent five minutes floating above my own body.


How does a man get from the haven of Shiga Prefecture to the top drawer of his recruitment field? Agility. Adaptability. Whether it was nature or nurture that made Kaz a double-A guy, he grew up with one eye on his environment and another on the world beyond. First, life-changing stop: the US, where he spent a year teaching Japanese at the Consul General’s office of Chicago and cross-country camping with international friends. Essential life perspective in hand, he returned to Japan and set about growing his family’s wholesale seaweed business, but when a friend suggested recruitment as a way to both expand his network and fuel his creativity, Kaz heard his future calling. Which led him, after fifteen years of stellar work in the Industrial, Energy and Mobility sector, to our elevator door. “I couldn’t find a reason not to join Zensho,” he says. “Our tribe – we accelerate amazing chemical reactions in each other.” While some like getting back to nature, this guy lives for it. Afternoons, you may find him picking wild mulberries, bamboo shoots, nuts and parsley, or catching Kanagawa river trout, which he’ll sauté, fry, stew or smoke, and then pair with craft beer, scotch and wine. Add another A if you like – authentic, admirable, or just plain awesome. Kaz can’t get any higher on our list.

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Values: A message to our awesome tribe

Years from now, you may not remember the particulars of deals you closed at Zensho (or what the returns were). You will remember your colleagues and how it felt to work with them. The imprint you left on the world.

We invited you to join our tribe because you impressed us as someone who shares values intrinsic to our culture. But just to ensure we’re totally on the same page, here they are, spelled out in black and white and trimmed in our corporate colors.

Freedom is Zensho’s central pillar. Beyond the mere state of being free, for us the word carries with it a sense of obligation: “Freedom to…” What follows should define you as a person. Of course, to provide your business community with amazing service, but also to engage and give back to the world. And that’s where Autonomy comes in. Unlike the general implications of self-rule, ours leads not to detachment but to a broad and radical sense of interconnectivity. One that enables each of us to commune with others in infinite ways. Together, these two values empower you like nothing else on earth, and they’re here waiting for you.

So, what do we ask in return?

Transparency means not only having open books, but being one yourself. No secrets or ulterior agendas. It is to share personal and industry information without seeking to leverage it for profit or motivate others in any way. Its cousin, Clarity, is about including precision and context in the communication process. At Zensho, we always try to anticipate the details a fellow partner might need and supply them up front.

Which leads us to…

Collaboration. That is, to cooperate meaningfully. Because only through recognizing individual strengths can we thrive as a whole. For us, collaboration requires presence as we listen and respond, evolving toward a collective goal represented by the name of our charity initiative: Ayni (reciprocity). This can’t exist without Collegiality. How we care for each other and the tribe as a whole, share both opportunity and responsibility with open hearts – that’s what empowers us to excel as a firm.

With these six in place, our seventh value happens all by itself.

Harmony. When your environment manifests balance between all people and things – even forces that oppose each other – life just flows. Living completely becomes a state of being. After all, that’s the very meaning of Zensho.