How to be among the most influential people: Learnings from Sundar Pichai

Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai has been named as one of the most influential people in TIME magazine’s list of Time 100 most influential people 2020. 

What is Time 100:

Time 100 is the annual listicle of the 100 most influential people in the world published by the American news magazine Time. Accordingly to the magazine, entrants are recognized for changing the world. Nominations for the list come from the time 100 alumni and the magazine’s international writing staff. The final list is chosen by Times editors.

Sundar Pichai Enters Time 100 list in 2020

Sundar Pichai was nominated for the list by Jamie Dimon, Chairman and CEO of JP Morgan Chase. As praised by Jamie Dimon and published by Time, “Taking the helm of an iconic American company and positioning it for long-term success in a way that reflects your values is no easy task.”

Sundar Pichai’s uniquely American story—emigrating from India as a young adult and working his way to become CEO of a $1 trillion corporation—represents the best of what we aspire for our society.

– Jamie Dimon, Chairman & CEO – J P Morgan Chase


Key skills to learn from Sundar Pichai, that makes him truly influential:

Jamie Dimon is not the only one recognizing Sundar for his soft skills, He has been praised multiple times for his soft skills and leadership style by Google Co founders Larry Page, Sergey Brin and his peers at his current and previous organizations which includes Microsoft, Sales force, Twitter, LinkedIn.

In a praise for Sundar, Dimon said specifying his 3 qualities “Sundar’s analytical, humble and inclusive leadership will position Google to meet the moment. These are traits the world could use a lot more of in these times.” From the above praise from Dimon, analytical skills are more common among other leaders, lets look at other two skills of Sundar Pichai as below:

Humbleness

Sundar Pichai brings humility, Passion for Technology to our users 

Larry Page & Sergey Brin : Co founders of Google


Sundar Pichai is well known for his humbleness among his colleagues. At Google, Sundar is described as soft spoken and well liked. While many give credit to his humble beginning from a lower middle class family from Madurai where he used to live in a two room apartment and he was 10 years old when his family got the first landline phone. They also had to wait for a long time to own a refrigerator. While he earned a scholarship to study his masters from Stanford in the US, still his family had to take a loan to fund his flight ticket and initial expenses. Sundar is a great example of sticking to humble roots even while rising to the top of corporate career. His humbleness is one of the reason he enjoys high trust among his colleagues. 

As described by Clay Bavor who runs Google’s virtual reality initiatives ““You want a deeply thoughtful, caring human person, thinking about those issues and leading the company making those things happen. I’m really glad that he, of all people, is Google’s CEO.” He further adds, “Selecting Sundar Pichai as CEO has reinforce Google’s commitment to building a people first company.”  

Inclusive Leadership

Sundar Pichai is well known for his strong optimism and promoting collaboration. If there is one thing about to separate Mr. Pichai from his CEO peers, it won’t be his technical depth or breadth, but his ability to attract talent, because he values people. He avoids confrontation, instead emphasizing cooperation. He waits out conflicts rather than confronting opponents. “He has great relationships. He’s just not a polarizing figure,” Minnie Ingersoll, a former Google product manager who worked with Pichai early in his career, told The Wall Street Journal.  

Here are few more skills of Sundar Pichai we need to learn to be successful.

Sundar Pichai’s life story is definitely a unique one starting form humble beginning to bringing revolutionary changes. There is surely a lot to learn form his story. 

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