A Twitter frenzy broke out on Monday, responding to headlines that Doritos is apparently creating “lady-friendly” chips. The news came after PepsiCo’s CEO, Indra Nooyi, told the Freakonomics podcast that the way men and women eat chips are different: “For women, low-crunch, the full-taste profile, not have so much of the flavor stick on fingers, and how can you put it in a purse?”
People were quick to be outraged and regard Nooyi’s comments as sexist, comparing it to lady Colonel Sanders, and the Bic Pen “for her.” But she never actually stated that there is such thing as a “Lady Doritos.”
Indra Nooyi is one of the few women CEOs in the world to run such a big company like PepsiCo. Out of her 47-minutes interview on Freakonomics, the media decided to draw out TWO directed questions about the approach she’s taking on male and female customers. Did anyone listen to the full podcast? Do they know that before answering those questions, she talked about how she observes people’s eating habits for a living, and provides evidence to the changing culture of these habits?
Perhaps she didn’t quite say the right words in response to the question, but what about when she talked about waking up at 4 a.m. every day and gets home from work at 10:30 or 11:00 p.m.? Not to mention how she’s also trying her best to be involved with her daughter’s school life. Or what about when she talked about being an immigrant Indian-American in the States AND a female CEO at the same time?
In the podcast she said, “I’d say that when you become a CEO and you’re a woman you are looked at differently. Whatever you say people do— they say things like, ‘Well a guy C.E.O. wouldn’t have said that. Or a guy would have said it differently.’ You are held to a different standard, there’s no question about it.”
Sadly, her points were proven when none of these other statements made the headlines. The very thing Nooyi was saying on the standards of being a female C.E.O is exactly what is happening right now.