When you think of women executives, your first thought might go Sheryl Sandberg, COO Facebook or Sophia Amoruso, CEO of Girlboss. A name that probably won’t come to mind is Indra Nooyi, the CEO of PepsiCo. Who at face value may appear to be the most non-american of CEO of a top American company.
Nooyi was born and raised in Tamil Nadu, India, in 1955. She received her bachelor degree in Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics and topped it with MBA (masters in business administration) from Indian Institute of Management Calcutta. After graduation, she started career as a manager at Johnson & Johnson and other leading companies. She attended the Yale School of Management, where she earned her second masters in Public and Private Management. Nooyi joined PepsiCo in 1994. She became the CFO of Pepsi in 2001 and worked her way to becoming President and CEO in 2006. Also ranked as number #2 as most powerful women, as she pushes business to be socially conscious.
And while her resume highlight are impressive, what is the most appealing to me is that she is a mom of two children. Being a great example that we are can be the breadwinner and the breadmaker. While I’m not naive that a work-home balance in full capacity is an idealistic notion. As I reach a point in my career where a few women are both moms and in managing position, its nice to have her to look up to. That we can reach career goals with out fully sacrificing being a mom. Just as men have done for centuries. As Indra Nooyi talked about in an interview of having it all with support and sacrifice. Also, for minorities in an industry that lacks diversity, it gives someone to admire. Someone who can stand head to head with other powerful CEO regardless of background and ethnicity. So while she is not who you would expect to be the head of Pepsi, she defiantly a role model of all women and men to admire.