Indra Nooyi is the CEO of PepsiCo, the largest food and beverage company in the US that has a towering global presence. She has been working at PepsiCo for seventeen years and she is ranked at number two on the list of 50 Most Powerful Women in Business that is published by Forbes. Indra Nooyi has been hailed as a modern, independent woman who could outperform her male counterparts on any given day. She is a role model and an iconic CEO for the whole world. Apart from leading a juggernaut of a company that employs more than 300,000 people, she has successfully steered the brand through the recession and has never been held up for any wrongdoing or malpractice.
Nooyi’s Leadership Style
Indra Nooyi leadership style is already in the syllabi of many colleges and universities, especially in courses on business administration and business management. By her own words, Indra Nooyi leadership style is about courage, competence, confidence, compass and communication skills. She is one of the best communicators in the world of business. Her public relations skills, the way she carries and conducts herself, how she manages the press and her employees are itself a case study for any aspiring entrepreneur or manager. Indra Nooyi is also known to be a leader with a heart. She has a very high moral standard set for herself and that has trickled down through her company over the years that she has held the reins. PepsiCo is regarded as one of the most ethical companies when it comes to employer-employee relations, client relations and public relations. Managing such a huge global brand is not a cakewalk and Indra Nooyi has managed that daunting challenge with élan.
Indra Nooyi leadership style is as much about hands-on leading from the front approach as it is about allowing room for others to grow and express themselves. She doesn’t contain her employees to set rules when she has to derive the best from them. She allows participative discussions, open forums and she believes in democratic leadership. But when push comes to shove, she is as autocratic as one needs to be so that firm decisions are not flouted and adhered to.
Indra Nooyi has also recently stated that leadership is about sacrifice. Her comments on how women cannot balance life and work, just as men cannot but more is expected from women on the home front, have created waves and have brought the spotlight back on how women cannot have it all. But her comments also shed light on how she has lived her life to be the leader she is and what the cost of leadership has to be.