As the CEO of PepsiCo - the second largest food and drink company in the world, according to Forbes - Indra Nooyi is one of the most influential women in the US. She has managed to work her way up the chain of command at PepsiCo before securing the role of CEO, meaning she is definitely one to listen to when it comes to tips for success.
Nooyi is now the face of a company with over 285,000 employees, but the skills she has picked up along the way can also benefit small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). Learning from what she has accomplished and her best advice can help lead to a more successful business.
Work hard at the job you're doing
Nooyi's first tip is to do your absolute best at the job you're currently doing rather than reaching for the next position. If you use all your energy on wanting another position, it means you end up forgetting what you have to do to get to that point. This can mean that you aren't prepared for the next level and so can't fulfill the role to the best of your ability.
"Focus on doing the current job you have so damn well that people say, 'Nobody else can do that job as well as Dan's doing it,'" she said. This can set you up for success, ensure that your efforts are valued and show what you could achieve if you do get an opportunity to move into another role.
On top of this, it will also mean you are best placed to pass on your skills to others, which is only going to benefit the company.
Make the most of difficult tasks
We're all made to think that the best route is to pick the easiest tasks that will allow us to complete them to a really high standard, helping with progression and leading to success. Nooyi's advice goes against this, as she says it is best to "embrace tough assignments".
Instead of simply taking the simplest route, she says it is better to challenge yourself and succeed at something more difficult. When it comes to easy tasks, people rarely notice when you do them well, which means you don't get to take the step up the ladder that you were hoping for.
However, solving difficult problems and finding solutions that others haven't managed is more likely to get you noticed for the right reasons, while also transforming you into a trusted leader.
Pick up on the details
According to Nooyi, the devil really is in the details. She advocates a focus on small details that often get overlooked, as these are important when it comes to delivering the best possible product or service. She said; “I pick up the details that drive the organization insane. But sweating the details is more important than anything else.”
Being aware of the difference that the small details can make helps to ensure that you make an impression and succeed at tasks. From aspects of the day-to-day running of a business to internal communications, looking at the small things can help you make improvements that boost productivity and customer experience.
As well as putting a focus on the small details, Nooyi also suggests taking a broader look at the world to see where and how your company fits in. She says that as the world is constantly changing, it opens up markets and opportunities that will be alien to many people. Looking at these and fully researching the complexities of different places can give you a better understanding of growing a business.
Looking at the broader world can also allow you to see improvements that can be made within a business, as well as help you to shape strategies for the future, all of which is crucial to success.