Wow - what a ride. My first 30 days at PepsiCo have been the busiest and most travel-heavy 30 days I've experienced in a long time. I've worked directly with a workforce more diverse in their ideas, backgrounds, and cultures than I've ever met collectively within any single organization. I've pitched new ideas that, as I write this, are already in production. I've bounced crazy thoughts to teams that have increased the crazy (and awesome) factor exponentially - and were as excited as I was to play with the possibilities. And while I realize I'm still in the honeymoon phase of my new employment - all this has come at the low, low cost of looking like a gushing fanboy for a calendar month.
(This is where we collectively laugh, people.)
If you've been following me on Twitter you know that I launched my first 30 days at PepsiCo with the #Onboarding hashtag. Dear friend, Jessica Lee, was intrigued enough to write a quick article on FoT that blew through what I was doing and offered up some great feedback. The truth is, I've seen a few posts and comments around the #Onboarding approach that have sparked some new ideas around how 'new hires' may be able to help push the word out. After all, I've certainly been sharing what's been going on with me while here. But in the event you've missed it - here's a quick summary of what my first month has entailed...
My first few days in the Plano, TX office were filled with questions about the facility itself, my workspace, benefit enrollment and when the heck I'd get a chance to check out the frisbee golf course or take advantage of the on-site gym. It wasn't very long however, until my new laptop arrived - already full of amazing "welcome" messages and meeting invitations from peers, colleauges and leadership. Amongst those were a few travel requests to head out to various cities to meet other members of my new teams - to include New York City and Minneapolis, most recently.
With just two weeks under my belt I was already neck deep in conversations around the creation and deployment of a new employment brand, some aggressive digitial marketing opportunities and helping to tackle a few challenges that some of our recruiting teams had been experiencing. At the end of my second week I felt comfortable pushing and receiving new ideas and strategies to members of recruiting, technology and marketing teams not just because everyone was so gracious in welcoming me - but rather because the teams were incredibly collaborative. While the lines of accountability were clear - there were (are) transparent lines of ownership in the sense of "This is mine" vs. "This is ours."
My third week I found myself in New York at the Purchase headquarters for something called Ring of Honor. In summary, this event recognized the amazing performance in front line sales at PepsiCo. It kicked off with Indra Nooyi (PepsiCo CEO) standing at the end of a "red carpet" reception (to include marching band and cheerleaders!) to shake the hands of over 225 winners and their family members that came from over 45 different countries to be recognized and thanked for their dedication and performance. Indra's excitement to meet each of these employees was visible - and her genuine interest in them both at the reception and throughout their activities resonated the same authenticity that comes across in her frequent internal letters and communications.
In summary - it's a win for this RecruiterGuy. There's been no "bait and switch." The same excitement that you see in a promotional video like the one above for the Pepsi Refresh project is what's felt in the offices I've visited and with the people I've met so far. The incredible span of brands and products under the PepsiCo umbrella is astounding - and frankly will be one of the employment marketing challenges I face moving into 2011. And I know it's early - but based on what I've seen so far, I've a hard time imagining how we won't knock each new project out of the park as we come together to see what's possible.