Manager R&D Snacks — Flavors and Seasonings
Tell us about yourself. What’s your typical day like?
I’ve been a food technologist with almost eight years of experience in research and development. For the past four years, I’ve worked as an associate scientist developing seasoning and flavors. Typically, my day involves product prototypes development, evaluation, finalization, meetings and coordination with stakeholders (e.g.; R&D, Category, GP, Suppliers, etc.).
You also take part in one of India’s hobby clubs. Can you tell us about it?
During the pandemic, the PepsiCo India team introduced hobby clubs. These have allowed associates to connect informally over video and share our hobbies with each other. I ended up leading a dancing club called In Sync Beats. Dancing really promotes feelings of joy, which can help people face difficult situations in life. Every Friday, I invited associates and their family members to learn different types of choreography. It’s been so nice to connect virtually like this. We’ve essentially been able to connect, dance, laugh and have fun for an hour. Having virtual dance classes also allowed me to reacquaint myself with dance and learn some new forms!
Are there any other clubs you take part in?
I’m actually a member of most of the hobby clubs! I participate in clubs focused on gardening, acting, art and cooking. All of these have taught me new skills. It’s hugely motivating when you share, say, a piece of artwork and group members openly share appreciation and motivate you. Trying out new activities has really helped keep me stress-free, happy and joyful. I’m beyond grateful to our human resource partners who provided a platform for us to connect, share interests, grow and learn.
How did PepsiCo empower you to join the clubs?
The pandemic has been so hard for everyone throughout the world. Our human resources team really took steps to make this period less difficult. Part of that was establishing no work calls on Fridays. Instead, we’ve taken the time to connect over video to discuss our passions and hobbies. Getting an opportunity to showcase our skills and passions has really benefited all of us.
What can other companies learn from PepsiCo?
I feel valued, respected, accepted and encouraged to fully participate in the organization. I feel comfortable sharing my ideas. PepsiCo truly supports women by creating once-in-a-lifetime opportunities for leadership. Any company can look to PepsiCo as a template for success. Here, I know I have the flexibility and freedom to explore my skills and passions.
Candid Conversations is an ongoing series about identity and workplace culture.