Women epitomize power. Take mythology, household or life, women have proved to be anchors in any sort of crises. However, many around the world still thing women are only good enough for household chores and mothering children (politicians and lawyers in India certainly believe so.) So here, we are listing down 10 of the most powerful women in the world who are considered to be the most effective and influential leaders in the world.
If we gave an award to women who inspired others in numbers, Oprah would win it every time. She was the first African-American woman to become a billionaire. The Chairman of Harpo, Inc. as a talk show host, Oprah changed television forever. She told Small Business Information that her show ‘The Oprah Winfrey Show’s mission, “…is to use television to transform people’s lives, to make viewers see themselves differently and to bring happiness and a sense of fulfillment into every home.”
Lagarde is the first woman to become the Managing Director of the International Monetary FUND. Having fought the eurozone’s sovereign debt crisis, she is considered one of the most powerful women in the world. Apart from this, she was also the first woman to chair the international law firm, Baker & McKenzie and become the first woman finance minister of a G-8 economy.
Kiran Mazumdar Shaw
Kiran Mazumdar Shaw is the founder and managing director of India’s largest biotech company, Biocon. According to Forbes, Shaw is the “wealthiest self-made woman in India.” She is one of the very few successful Indian women in tech and is an inspiration to thousands of women in the country. She is also a philanthropist and has contributed a great deal to provide affordable medical treatment for people in India.
In 2014, Yellen became the first female chair of the Federal Reserve. She is considered a “dove” by many due to her inclination towards dealing with unemployment rather than inflation. Yellen was previously the CEO of the Federal Reserve Bank San Francisco and was elected a ‘Distinguished fellow’ of the American Economic association in 2012.
A Nigerian businesswoman, Alakija is the richest self-made African businesswoman in the world. Last year, she was listed as the 96th most powerful woman in the world by Forbes. Alakija started her career as a secretary in a bank. After a successful career in the fashion industry, she entered into a joint venture with Star Deep Water Petroleum Limited. Her company is currently one of Nigeria’s highest producing OIL blocks, making 200,000 barrels a day.
A former United States Secretary of State, U.S. Senator, and First Lady of the United States, Hillary will be a Presidential candidate in the upcoming U.S.A elections. She has been a ‘female first’ many times including being the first female chair of the Legal Services Corporation and the first female partner at Rose Law Firm. She is true advocate of women’s rights and has been listed as one of the most powerful women in the world on many occasions.
Sandberg joined Google in 2001 when it was still relatively small and in the coming years, Sandberg played a huge role in its success. In 2008, she joined Facebook. She helped with Facebook’s revenue and now holds over 12 million shares in the company. She has also authored two bestseller books- “Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead” and “Why We Have Too Few Women Leaders.”
Featuring very often in the ‘Powerful Women in the world’ lists, Wojcicki is the CEO of YouTube. Before being Google’s first MARKETING manager in 1999, she worked for companies like Intel and Bain & Company previously. Being the mother of five children, she has repeatedly talked about the importance of paid maternity leave and striking the right work-life balance.
She is the current Chairperson and CEO of the world’s second biggest food and Beverage Company by net revenue: Pepsi Co. Nooyi joined the company in 1994 and was appointed as CFO in 2001. The US News & World report named her one of America’s best leaders. Nooyi also leads the US India Business Council (USIBC). She is one of the most consistently featuring woman on the ‘Powerful women’s lists.
The first woman President of Brazil, she joined President Lula da Silva’s government and was appointed the energy minister. Rousseff’s is responsible for popular measures such as the reduction of the federal tax in the energy bill and the exemption of federal tax in the products of the consumer basket -meat, milk, beans, rice, flour, potatoes, tomatoes, bread, sugar, coffee powder, etc.
[Featured Picture Courtesy: Emirates 24/7]