Sunday, November 29, 2009

Randy Papadellis of Ocean Spray

In "The Boss" column of the November 29, 2009 New York Times Business Section, Randy Papadellis discusses his professional journey from working in his family business as a middle schooler to becoming CEO of Ocean Spray and all the stops along the way.

In discussing his decision to leave a more traditional role at Frito-Lay and take a position building a new marketing department at Cadbury's confections division, Papadellis states, "I knew Frito-Lay would be successful with or without me. I was intrigued with the idea that I was going to make a difference as an individual rather than through a process."

That decision to pursue the roles that would make a difference have certainly contributed to his success in leading the Ocean Spray organization for the past 5 years.

In an interview posted in Prendismo, Papadellis further expands on his thoughts on business and leadership. In this clip, he states, "I had to learn that quite often the best answer isn't the first answer, and business problems aren't solve sequentially."

Click here to see Randy Papadellis' entire interview in Prendismo.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

"Corner Office" with Drew Gilpin Faust

In a November 1, 2009 New York Times "Corner Office" piece entitled Leadership Without a Secret Code, Harvard president Drew Gilpin Faust discussed the importance of open communication when in a position of leadership.

Faust states, "I spend a huge amount of time reaching out to people, either literally or digitally, and with alumni networks all over the world, so that I can connect. Leadership by walking around - that's a digital space now, it's a virtual space. An enormous amount of my job is listening to people, to understand where they are, how they see the world so that I can understand how to mobilize their understanding of themselves in service of the institutional priorities."

Her desire to reach out and continually understand the position of her stakeholders is very much in line with a comment she made a few years back in our collection when she stated, "Be ready to be surprised and take satisfaction from those surprises."

In a related discussion on communication with Cornell University president, David Skorton, he shared the importance of communicating openly and spending a greater portion of time observing rather than speaking. In this clip from a sit-down interview, he shares an amusing anecdote from a brief conversation with a Cornell student - whose input made him re-think the way he wrote his weekly newspaper column.