Nearly two years have passed since COVID-19 first appeared, and in that time many things have changed, including how people work, move and communicate. While these changes have made it difficult for Toyota colleagues around the world to see each other in person, the difficult times have also been an opportunity to better appreciate the bonds uniting the global Toyota family.
With these thoughts in mind, Toyota President Akio Toyoda delivered a New Year’s greeting to all Toyota colleagues around the world as 2022 began. Expressing his gratitude for their tireless effort to keep the company up and running even during the pandemic, Toyoda asked them to do three things in 2022.
Here is the transcript of Toyoda’s message:
“Happy New Year, to all my Toyota and Lexus team members around the world! I hope you were able to spend some time with your family over the holidays, and like me, are recharged and ready for 2022!
“It’s hard to believe it’s been 2 years since the pandemic began, but all of you continue to amaze me with your never-ending ability to adapt. Perhaps that’s why, despite the continued challenges, 2021 will go on record as the 2nd highest global sales year in our history! How awesome is that?!
“Each one of you must take your share of the credit for this achievement, and this includes our entire Toyota family, from the sales regions, to the dealerships, to our manufacturing plants, to our suppliers. It also includes our designers and engineers who were responsible for all the new products and technologies that we were able to share with the world last year. I honestly can’t begin to tell you how proud I am of all of you and how excited I am about our future.
“Let me also thank you for all that you continue to do, to assist your communities and those in need. We may not be at the end of this pandemic, but with every passing day, we are getting closer to it. So let’s stay positive and optimistic, and most of all, thankful for every new day and every new opportunity.
“Let’s also appreciate what others have achieved on our behalf, like all the global Toyota Team athletes that overcame so much to participate in last year’s Olympics and Paralympics, or our motorsports teams around the world — with a special shout out to our WEC and WRC teams that won both the championship and manufacturer’s titles in 2021!
“So, as we begin this new year, I want all of us to commit to making the most of it. In fact, I would like to ask you to do three things for me this year:
“Number one: Learn something new! Learn a new language, learn how to paint, learn how to become a master driver! It can be anything, as long as you’ve never done it before!
“Number two: Reach out to a Toyota or Lexus colleague in another region — even on the other side of the world — and learn how they approach the same challenges you may have. We could all gain so much from sharing our experiences with each other, supporting each other and just making a new friend!
“And number three: Make sure to enjoy time away from work! Turn off your cell phone, close your computer and have some much deserved fun!
“Let’s make 2022 the year to be daring, to be grateful and to produce more smiles than ever before!
“And finally, please know how very much I appreciate all of you and hope to see you soon! Take care and stay safe.”