In a world where men dominate the board rooms, a few extraordinary women have chosen to lock horns with the boys and have come out on top. These women have generated buzz in the business world and have built successful empires to their names.
If you’re a woman in the corporate world, whether you’re in the pharmaceutical industry or belong in a company of credit data providers, let these women inspire you to be more than you can possibly think you can be.
8 Female Powerplayers Rocking the Business World Today
- Heineken USA’s Maggie Timoney
One would probably credit Timoney’s success and competitiveness to her days as a basketball player in her youth. Other than teaching her self-empowerment, confidence, and resilience, basketball has taught her that there wasn’t any room for genders when it comes to winning in business. What’s important is that men and women combine to become a formidable team to have a shot at winning.
This kind of competitiveness and level-headedness has brought her to where she is right now, at the helm of one of America’s top five beer companies.
- Rosewood Hotel Group’s Sonia Cheng
Sonia Cheng may have been born into one of Hong Kong’s wealthiest families but make no mistake, she has paid her dues to get to where she is.
Before taking over the family’s hotel business which bought Rosewood, Cheng went to Harvard and studied applied mathematics. Her jobs as a real estate investment banker at both Morgan Stanley and Warburg Pincus allowed her to see how small companies operated and how they grew to become listed companies. Armed with this knowledge and a few more she picked up along the way, she has turned around doubts about her leadership and gained the respect of skeptic rivals and observers.
- IBM’s Ginni Rometty
Taking on a leadership role is not a new thing to Rometty. Since she was 15 years old, she has already been responsible for her household and siblings when her father left them and her mother had to take multiple jobs.
The responsibilities she had then taught her the value of hard work and loyalty. When she graduated with high honors from Northwestern University under a General Motors scholarship, she immediately went to start her career at General Motors Institute. She moved to IBM a couple of years later in 1981 and has since moved on up the corporate ladder to get to where she is.
- General Motors’ Mary Barra
Just like Ginni Rometty, Mary Barra got her start with General Motors. She was only 18 when she started working with GM as a co-op student. She eventually worked through some engineering and administrative posts before she was given the responsibility of managing an entire assembly plant.
Her loyalty to GM paid off as she rose through its ranks from 2008 to 2014 when she became the first-ever female head of an automotive company.
- Bumble’s Whitney Wolfe Herd
The woman responsible for Tinder’s name and the inspiration for its logo has always been enterprising and innovative. While she was still in college, she started her bamboo tote bag business. Eventually, she helped spearhead the non-profit Help Us Project and did work with several orphanages.
She would end up meeting Sean Rad to create Cardify and eventually start Tinder together in 2012 along with Chris Gulkzynski. Wolfe Herd left her position at Tinder in 2014 to create a similar dating app that gave women more control. The app, known as Bumble, has already over 22 million users.
- In-and-Out Burger’s Lynsi Snyder
Even if she inherited the business from her grandparents, Harry and Esther Snyder, the road to success did not come easy for Lynsi Snyder. She has never graduated from university, struggled with substance and alcohol abuse, lost her father to drugs, and had three unsuccessful marriages, one would say that she is not fit for the CEO post of the epitome of American trendy fast food.
She started her job as a cash register and went through different positions in the company. Her intimate knowledge of how each department worked coupled with all the life lessons she has learned and her faith, has led her to turn her life around and successfully manage one of the best fast food joints in the country.
- YouTube’s Susan Wojcicki
Even before she became the CEO of the world’s most successful video-sharing platform, Wojcicki was already making waves as an entrepreneur. She has gone from door-to-door salesgirl at the age of 11 selling spice ropes to marketing for Intel to becoming one of Google’s first few employees and marketing manager. From there she worked her way through different departments until she landed a post at the Google Video Service, Google’s answer to YouTube then. Seeing the great potential that YouTube has, she recommended that Google acquire the platform and became responsible for its $1.65-billion acquisition in 2006.
These formidable women CEOs have shown everyone that with the right passion and purpose, you can achieve more than your wildest dreams.