On February 9, IPADE welcomed Rodrigo Puga, President and CEO of Pfizer Mexico, to its campus in Mexico City to participate in the first CEO Lecture Series® of 2017.
Following a warm introduction from IPADE Dean Rafael Gómez Nava, Mr. Puga gave attendees a brief overview of the history of Pfizer, the positives and challenges currently facing the pharmaceutical industry, as well as his professional experience and the experiences and lessons learned that have truly changed his life and his career.
“I’m an outlier because I’ve spent the past 20 years working with the same company,” said Mr. Puga. “Why? Because Pfizer has always provided fertile ground for me to try new things, for me to learn. The biggest benefit for me, that’s led to me spending 20 years at the same company, is culture. The culture is why I stayed.”
Mr. Puga emphasized the importance of both personal as well as organizational responsibility, highlighting Pfizer’s focus on investing in cutting edge Research & Development, as well as its dedication to the communities in which it is active.
“Life expectancy has increased significantly in the past 30 years, and much of that increase (40%) is due to the pharmaceutical industry… What we do is crucial, but how we do it is just as important. We’re touching people’s lives every day,” said Mr. Puga. “… It’s not enough to be #1 in sales and have high profits. If society doesn’t accept you and doesn’t value you, then all that means nothing. That’s short term thinking. ”
Rodrigo Puga also highlighted the importance of learning from other people and other cultures, something he has experienced throughout his extensive international professional experience. Born in Argentina, Mr. Puga completed his undergraduate education in Argentina and his MBA in Chile. He then went on to work with Pfizer in Argentina, Uruguay, and Paraguay, and eventually assumed leadership roles at Pfizer Peru, then Pfizer Colombia, and most recently, Pfizer Mexico.
“It’s important to learn that there’s no one right way to do something, and that different cultures and different methods can teach you great things,” said Mr. Puga. “… You should be willing and open to learn from other people and other cultures, but it’s important not to lose your authentic self.”
The CEO Lecture Series® provides current IPADE students and alumni the opportunity to engage with and learn from the top management of major multinational companies. The CEO Lecture Series® also provides a space for networking and interaction among the IPADE community, the largest network of businesspeople in Mexico.