Who is the business person of the year?
Yet, there are people who don't look down the barrel of pessimism and they continue on a path of global dominance and financial reward.
In the US, people who continue to show the world how it is done:
1. Howard D Schultz, Founder and CEO of Starbucks. I have just finished reading the book on Starbucks and I am impressed. It's a great story and an even better marketing blueprint that many other companies have followed but failed to duplicate. He is the 2011 Fortune Magazine Businessperson of the Year and a billionaire to boot.
2. Jeffrey P Bezos, Founder and CEO of Amazon. Another great book to read is the story on Amazon and its continued global dominance. I use to buy from Book Depositary because I thought it was cheaper, but Amazon through its acquisition has gained my loyalty and a few gold stars. Another marketers dreamboat, Amazon's business model is as impressive as its Founder.
3. Mark Zuckerberg, Founder and CEO of Facebook. Not only do I love the movie which did not portray Mark in the best light, but nevertheless gained incredible insight into the world of how a business like Facebook was founded and built. Since then, Facebook has listed on NASDAQ with questionable results but that still hasn't dampened my enthusiasm for Mark Zuckerberg as an entrepreneur with steely result. He may be a bit odd, but who isn't? Look at Bill Gates - is he normal? I don't think you can reach the upper echlon of business like this and be 100% normal. He is a fascinating character and it will be interesting to see how well Facebook does in the next few years. Nevertheless, Zuckerberg has made his money and will always be the Founder of Facebook.
In Australia, there are three amazing businesspeople that I would place in the top 30 businesspeople in the world:
1. Gina Reinhardt, Mining Magnate: This women is invincible. She is strong, determined, smart and well respected. It may seem like she came from nowhere but be assured she is no strinking voilet and while the world is fascinated by this magnate who holds the title of the richest woman in the world, she keeps her cards close to her chest. Like anyone, I am very interested in what makes this woman tick and am incredibly interested in where her media interests end up.
2. Jack Cowin, Hungry Jacks: An incredible gentleman and more respected than any other businessman I have met in Australia. He has a loyal following and plays the game privately and without fanfair. His advice is invaluable and he has an electric group of friends that I think highlights the diversity of his personality. Noone can dispute his business acumen and ability to find a good deal. On top of all of that, he is a family man. Absolutely my favourite businessman in Australia although he is Canadian.
3. Gail Kelly, CEO, Westpac Bank: This woman is dynamite. She embodies so many great things about a woman who is successful. Great family, incredibly smart, good communication skills and very strategic. On top of that, she has a great family. Need I say more.