Zooming in and Zooming Out

Indra Nooyi

Lesson time 11:45 min

Learn what innovation means to Indra as she shares her philosophy of zooming in and out when exploring big ideas.

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Topics include: Learn about what innovation means to Indra as she shares her philosophy of zooming in and out when exploring ideas.


[MUSIC PLAYING] - If you want to be a leader, you've got to feel the business. You have to go out and seek the direction of the company. In this next lesson, I'm going to explore how to zoom in to fully understand the details of any business and then zoom out to understand how the business fits into an overall competitive landscape. This ability to zoom in and out is essential to develop a long-term strategic vision. Any business is a complex organism. It has different functions, different regions, different disciplines that all come together to make up a business. And if you're a leader of a business, you've got to know each aspect of the business in detail. So let me give you a particular example. Let's say you're selling cereal in China. You have to understand, first, who the customers are, who the retail partners, who are the end consumers, who's going to buy the product? You've got to understand how to advertise the product. Does the brand even resonate in the local market? What are the traditions of the local country? How do they consume the product? What's the cereal manufacturing process? Exactly how are you going to make the different brands of cereal? What manufacturing lines do you have? How many people do you need? What are the environmental issues? What permitting issues do you need? You need to understand all of those pieces. It may not be down to a granular detail because you've got other people who do all that stuff. You've got to know what the important questions are that you should be asking about the manufacturing. You've got to understand site selection. Where do you have to locate the factory so that products can be shipped to the customers easily? It's a dizzying detail that you have to get into to be able to really understand the business, every aspect of the business. But there are some skills you can use to help. One of the skills that I practiced through my life is the skill of zooming in and zooming out. Let me talk about what I mean by that. If you say, I want to launch a 50-pack Pepsi. I'm just picking an example. It's easy to say, 50 pack, 50 cans in one big package. God, I can price it so that it's compelling and will drive a lot of Pepsi sales. So this is an example of an idea at a very high level, zoomed out. But then when you start to go down slice by slice and say, does it make sense when you land it? And this is where curiosity can lead to creative solutions, helping you wrap your head around the problem. But now we have to think about can we actually make a 50-pack Pepsi on the line? Is a manufacturing line such that it can actually package 50-packs? Can it actually be put on a store shelf? Can a buyer actually buy it and put it on their cart? Does it have room in a refrigerator or a pantry? And how will they dispense from the 50-pack of Pepsi? On the shelf, in the pantry, to the consumer, does it make sense? Then you say, it doesn't, then you look back and go, what's the o...

About the Instructor

Ever wonder what it takes to be the CEO of a Fortune 50 company? Indra Nooyi didn’t set out to become the first woman of color to do so. She simply (and tenaciously) focused on big ideas. As the former CEO of PepsiCo, Indra transformed a global industry. Now she’s teaching you her transformational approach to leadership. Learn to simplify complex problems, persuade others to buy into your vision, and discover how leading with purpose can improve your life beyond the boardroom.

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Indra Nooyi

Indra Nooyi, former CEO of PepsiCo, teaches you to think big, be brave, and make purpose-driven changes at work.

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