Global Inspiration: William H. Saito

William H. Saito is a talented individual who has influenced many throughout his career. He is Special Advisor of the Prime Minister and Cabinet Office for Japan’s government. He is the former Vice Chairman of Palo Alto Networks. He was listed amongst the “100 Most Influential People in Japan.” From an early age, he had a strong interest in software programming. In elementary school, Saito began software programming.


By his high school years, he had initiated and founded his own company. In 1998, Saito was named “Entrepreneur of the Year” by multiple publications including USA Today, Ernst & Young and NASDAQ. He has received global recognition as a cybersecurity founder. He is an official board member of WEF (World Economic Forum). His position advises official national governments on a global scale. William H. Saito has an autobiography titled “An Unprogrammed Life.” His autobiography was published by John Wiley and Sons in 2011.

Saito’s Opinions and Life Experiences

Saito was asked his opinions pertaining to finical turmoil and the effect it has had on start-up companies. As a result of his background as an advisor, he is knowledgeable and qualified to give advice on this topic. The interviewer asked Saito how financial challenges have affected start-up companies in Japan. Saito says that during times of financial difficulties, the most successful start-up companies are formed. He believes that “now is the time” for companies to be initiating their efforts because of the opportunity and the possibilities available.

The interviewer then asks how it is possible for companies to receive funding when there are times of finical hardships. Saito says that start-ups are exposed to real-life financial constraints when receiving investment funds. He says that start-up companies are much more careful and diligent with their finances when funds are low. Saito explains that when the company does grow and become successful, the difficult times will keep them consistent and responsible to carry the business forward.

The interviewer asked William H. Saito about business risk in the United States versus business risk in Asian countries. Saito says failure in Asian countries tends to lead entrepreneurs to bounce back and quickly try again. He says that in the United States, failure is perceived as part of the process of becoming successful. Saito says there are differences in the way each culture perceives the road to success.