Leadership: Indra Nooyi On Running A Fortune 500 Company (And Retirement Binge Watching)

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Those who read your book will know that you never did really retire because you say that you continue to work 18 hours a day. What does Indra Nooyi do now? What does she eat, drink watch, wear? Who are you today?

Indra Nooyi: I sit on corporate boards; I advise a lot of start-ups. I teach at the U.S. Military Academy in West Point. I sit on the board of Memorial Sloan Kettering. I do a lot of stuff to give my time to people who would benefit from my time. I sit on the board of Amazon and Philips, so that gives me good corporate experience and continued experience. I love the portfolio of things I’m doing.

Besides that, I was co-chair of ReOpen Connecticut, so I learned all about the pandemic. I’m the co-chair of the Connecticut Economic Development Council, so I know all about state economic development. Whoever calls for help, I’m always there.

I mentored 20 South Asian high school kids from this area, I volunteered to do that. I called the India Cultural Centre and said I’d like to mentor 20 high school kids. I did that for eight weeks—it was the most rewarding experience of my life, I loved doing that.

I’m spending a little bit more time with my daughters who are all grown up and got their own jobs, but they’re living around our house so we try to have meals together, we try to cook together.

I do binge watch shows. In the U.S., I’ve watched Mindy Kaling’s show, Never Have I Ever, I’ve watched Kim’s Convenience. I’ve watched all kinds of interesting TV shows here. I binge-watched them, I watched all the episodes. The Crown, Succession, Villains—all of them.

Indian shows, I watch Indian Idol. I’ve been watching this TV show called Anupama. It’s driving me nuts, because I cannot believe women are being portrayed that way. It just makes me mad, but I’m still watching it because I’m addicted to it. So, I watched bizarre shows. I might watch a Hindi movie with English subtitles because somebody told me it’s a great movie and so I watch it. I watch YouTube channels when I feel like it.

Look when you don’t sleep much, there’s a lot of time on our hands to read, watch TV, watch stuff on your iPad. I do all of this; I listen to music. It’s a good life, I must say. It is life-fulfilling.

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