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, November 16, 2012, 0 Comments

And … importantly a caring human being… Undoubtedly,  my favorite leader for more reasons than one.

I’m talking about Indra Nooyi, the woman who has inspired many… Other women especially can learn from her, that, you can be yourself and make it to the top. She proves that there is no need to be a b%^&h, to run a successful company such as Pepsico.

I saw a video where Indra Nooyi talks about the 5 C’s of leadership. She incorporates and practices this leadership style day in, day out:

  1. Competency: making sure you are the best in your field and then strive to  remain the best
  2. Courage and Confidence: having the confidence to speak up about your beliefs and show your skills.
  3. Communication: be clear in your written and oral communications. A vital skill that Nooyi stresses.
  4. Consistency: keeping your decisions consistent, even if you change course, stick to the same plans.
  5. Compass: having integrity in all that you do as a person and leader [i]


We have been discussing similar themes and now this list from a successful CEO, makes our choice of leadership style fairly easy and simple. She admits that she does struggle with work-life balance but with some coping mechanisms, she survives. She is like the rest of us!

Then, we have Gina Rinehart– an Australian mining tycoon and the world’s richest woman according to the BRW as of May 2012[ii]. Forget for a minute that she started off as a wealthy person and let’s talk about her leadership style. We spoke about the style of ‘Miranda Priestley’ a few weeks ago, remember? Apparently, Gina Rinehart is just like her. It appears that she is the sort of boss you only get to agree with, not otherwise. You can read more here

Comparing Rinehart and Nooyi, one is ‘forceful’, the other ‘enabling’, one is a communicative leader, the other not at all. One creates jobs and the other tells the ‘non-rich’ to work more and says minimum wage should be reduced.

Business wise, both organizations are doing well. Which leadership style is better? Who do you want to work with?

No prizes for guessing which woman falls into which style.

This discussion brings to mind Daniel Goleman and the concept introduced by him – “emotional intelligence”. This includes self-awareness, self-regulation, motivation, empathy, and social skill over and above basic requirements a leader must possess such as “intelligence, toughness, determination, and vision”.

Some people who have climbed or are climbing up the corporate ladder often tell you that to be successful you have to FOCUS and keep your eye on the goal. Sure…but first ask yourself “What does success mean to me? What is my goal? Do I want something at any cost?”

Being aware of who you are as a person and what you want clarifies how you want to get to, where you want to go. Then, you can sort of re-configure your own self. Once that is sorted the other areas fall into place. The chief of Pepsico is very self-aware and follows her advice of the 5 C’s, all this making her emotionally intelligent. That’s enough to set her apart from the others.

So, how do you want to be remembered?

As a leader who has a high net worth company or as a leader who has a high self-worth?