Leaders from the FMCG world talk about the questions individuals should ask themselves before they pursue a career in Consumer Goods. In a B-School context, some of the other domains like Banking and Consulting can seem glamorous in the short-run. They provide a longer term view on how a career plays out in the Consumer Goods world.
Career in Consumer Goods
People often equate Consumer Goods with Sales and Marketing. Finding your first job after an MBA can be confusing with people often resorting to using compensation as the sorting factor. Prakash sheds some light on how people could think about a career in Consumer Goods
Consumer Goods (FMCG) as a career option
Vinita talks about how she got into a career in Consumer Goods and reflects on what elements of it have been rewarding for her. She also talks about the key questions people should ask themselves before embarking on a career in a Products company.
Choosing to stay in HUL
Sudhir speaks about why people in organizations like HUL provide an opportunity for people to pursue a career over the long term. He alludes to the quality of HR processes (specifically Career Management and Leadership Development) that keeps motivated through their journey. He also speaks about the criticality of early shared experiences in the field which builds a special culture and creates a camaraderie that keeps the cohort together as they grow in the organization.
HR - a department with teeth
Sudhir speaks about what makes the HR function in HUL effective. He speaks about the structure of HR where it is an independent function but is embedded in the business. He also speaks about why HUL doesn’t label people as heroes or villains too quickly. He speaks about a process where for about 10-12 years, people grow gradually but subsequently, they accelerate or decelerate based on their potential.
Specialization versus Generalization
Sudhir speaks about why it is easier to grow a category than growing market share in a category. He also speaks about his experiences with Kissan to make the point about limited real estate in consumers’ minds and therefore suggests that brands should win where they are by solving unsolved problems in what they are doing well than going wide. He also goes on to speak about how he thought about his early career choices and his father’s influence in getting him to join HUL.