Top 10 Most Powerful Women In The World 2012 (Business Leaders)

Business Leaders Who Influenced the Course of World Politics

The world’s most powerful women are the world’s most important leaders too. Decisions taken by them have influenced the course of world politics and corporate affairs to a large extent. Some such important and powerful woman leaders in the year 2012 include:

1) Angela Merkel

As Germany’s chancellor since last 7 years, Angela Merkel automatically qualifies as a very powerful leader of the world. But the fact that her leadership constitutes the spine of the 27-member European Union makes her the most influential women leader of the world. She has borne the weight of the euro on her shoulders for quite a few years and she holds on to her position despite strong opposition to her hard-line austerity prescription for bailing Europe out of its debt crisis.

2) Hillary Clinton

As US secretary of state, Hillary Clinton has played an important role in influencing world politics last year. Her efforts to establish a better world order has forced her to trot around the globe 42 times in 2012.  Dealing with the Syria crisis she was the first leader to prevail upon the Syrian President Bashar Assad to hand over his power and leave his country. She sent out a stern warning to the young North Korean leader Kim Jong Un asking him to desist from pursuing the policies of his militant father. Her role in initiating peace processes in other strife torn parts of the world like Egypt and Afghanistan has been widely appreciated. Democrats see her as their best bet for the 2016 presidential elections.

3) Dilma Rouseff

Dilma Rouseff is leading the world’s sixth-largest economy (GDP $2.4 trillion). Ever since being elected to power in 2011, Rousseff’s has inspired a new generation of startups. Under her stewardship, Brazil has gone from a debtor to a creditor to the International Monetary Fund. This has been possible because of the poverty alleviation program started by Rousseff which lifted 40 million of its people into the middle class. By late 2012, electricity services were made available for the first time to 12 million people living in Brazil’s rural areas. She has helped her country take great strides towards improving the quality of education from early to college-level by increasing the number of technical schools and universities.

4) Melinda Gates

As wife of Bill Gates, one of the biggest entrepreneurs of the world, Melinda easily qualifies among the most powerful women in the world. Her enormous clout is evident from the fact that she coerced the Vatican to reconsider its position against birth control. In an effort to take her cause further Melinda Gates has vowed an additional personal $560 million—to enable women from poor countries get better access to contraception. To date the Gates charity foundation has donated more than $25 billion to carry out poverty eradication and improve public health and education around the world.

5) Jill ABrason

As head of the New York Times, Jill ABrason has displayed amazing leadership skills, grit and determination to turn around the fortunes of the 161-year-old publication.  She initiated a game-changing digital transformation in one of world’s leading publication and shuffled the editorial staff to bring about effective and result-yielding changes in the way the newspaper is run. Under her pioneering leadership has recruited more than half a million paid subscribers. Today, the news portal attracts over 40 million unique visitors each month.

6) Sonia Gandhi

Sonia Gandhi is the de-facto ruler of India. She is the leader of India’s ruling political party. In other words her decisions influence the fate of over a 100 billion people. Besides, she indirectly heads the world’s tenth-largest economy. She is today India’s biggest vote catcher and plays a decisive role in charting the course of the present day government. Her strident opposition has forced the government to backtrack on many unpopular decisions.

7) Michele Obama

In 23012, Michelle Obama was more popular with the American masses than her president husband, The American First Lady has kept a high profile with her commitment to military families, to end childhood obesity and her stylish fashion picks. This year the HarvardLawSchool grad led the U.S. Olympic delegation in July’s opening ceremony. She also played a key role in her husband’s second election victory.

8) Christine Lagarde

Though Lagarde has maintained a low profile, she has played an extremely important role in shaping the course of the International Monetary Fund. She is the first woman to run the 188-country financial organization. During the first year of her tenure she spent much of her time battling Europe’s debt crisis. It was because of her singular efforts that she managed to secure an additional $430 billion in funding from G-20 countries. This figure is almost double of the IMF’s lending capacity – a feat not achieved so far.

9) Janet Napolitano

She is the first female head of the Department of Homeland Security. To put it in lay terms, she heads the third largest department in U.S. politics. Janet took over this prestigious position after serving as the governor of Arizona from 2003 to 2009. After she took over she brought the department in the spotlight, more so because of June’s SCOTUS decisions on Arizona immigration policy and Attorney General Eric Holder’s “Fast and Furious” hot potato. She has had a illustrious career in local and state-level politics and law enforcement. IN the coming days, she is expected to play a role donned by few female leaders in American politics.

10) Sheryl Sandberg

Sheryl is one of Facebook’s boards of directors. Prior to this she was Facebook’s COO–and steered the social media giant through its $100 billion IPO in May. As the company’s first female board member, Sheryl owns nearly $1 billion of unvested stock in the company. Before she took over Facebook, she had an illustrious past. As a Harvard MBA she served as chief of staff for the U.S. Treasury Department. In the capacity of Google’s vice president she managed the company’s online global sales and operations. For a whole generation of female careerists, Sheryl Sandberg has emerged as an leading icon.

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