In a male-dominated world of business, some women have broken all barriers to get to the top.
Cracking through the glass ceiling in a man dominated world is difficult, presents many challenges, requiring many sacrifices to made, and family and society related pressures to be absorbed. Forget a developing country like India, more progressive countries in the West also face the same issue. According to the Glass Ceiling Commission in the United States, about 95 to 97 per cent of the senior managerial posts in country’s largest corporations are held by men. We salute these women who have beaten all the odds and have emerged cream of the crop in their organizations. Take a bow ladies!
Chanda Kochhar is the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of ICICI Bank Limited. She began her career with ICICI as a Management Trainee in 1984 and has thereon successfully risen through the ranks by handling multidimensional assignments and heading all the major functions in the Bank at various points in time.
Vinita Bali, Managing Director, Britannia Industries, has always made unconventional decisions. Rising prices of wheat, sugar and dairy products affect her as much as they do every housewife.
Kalpana Morparia former Joint Managing Director of ICICI Bank, and currently CEO of JPMorgan gives complete credit for her transformation from a corporate lawyer to a corporate leader to K.V. Kamath.
Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, Chairman and Managing Director of Biocon, is India’s bio-tech queen. She says in a an interview to Forbes India that she learnt the importance of self-reliance and personal re-invention at an early age. From starting of with Rs 10,000 in a garage her company Biocon is today worth Rs. 1,511 crore.
Mallika Srinivasan, the Chairman and CEO of TAFE, believes in a no-frills working style. She has risen to become India's tractor woman making an indelible impression in a heavily male-dominated industry. TAFE's turnover, a mere Rs86 crore in 1985 - the year she joined - had risen to Rs5,800 crore by 2010/11
Long before the expression 'dealmaker' became commonplace in India, Naina Lal Kidwai, 54, currently country head of HSBC, was one of the biggest dealmakers in the country. It goes without saying that she was also one of the first women to enter the formerly male bastion of investment banking and rise spectacularly
Ekta Kapoor has created a niche for herself as the queen of the silver screen soaps. As the Joint Managing Director and Creative Director of Balaji Telefilms, her production company, she rules almost every television network
Neelam Dhawan is the Managing Director of Hewlett-Packard India. She has been an icon for women in the IT industry. There were just a handful women in the industry way back in the early 80s when she began her career accidentally at HCL
Preetha Reddy the managing director of India's largest healthcare company, Apollo hospitals. Ms Reddy has been instrumental in the group's quality certification process (ISO 14001 and 9001). As a trailblazer, she ensured the JCI accreditation process in five of the group hospitals in Delhi, Chennai, Hyderabad, Ludhiana and Dhaka.
Roopa Kudva, Managing Director and CEO of Crisil, has been with the rating agency for 19 years. She is also Region Head, South Asia, of Standard & Poor's, which holds majority shares in Crisil.
A nominated member of the Rajya Sabha, Shobhana Bhartia also runs one of India's largest media houses. She is Chairperson and Editorial Director of HT Media which had revenues of Rs 1,815 crore in 2010/11.
Simone Tata, the chairperson of Trent, has worked out an uncomplicated equation to ensure the success of Westside, the chain of lifestyle stores the company set up in 1998. Mrs Tata took over as the company's chairman in 1982, and she was appointed a director of Tata Industries in 1989.
Sulajja Firodia Motwani, an MBA from Carnegie Mellon University, USA, Sulajja started her career at BARRA international, a leading investment analytic firm in California. She worked there for four years before joining Kinetic. She is now the Joint Managing Director of Kinetic Engineering Ltd and Director, Kinetic Motors.
Sunita Narain head of Delhi-based Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) is acerbic and a populist in the same breath. Narain says in an interview to TIME, her main goal is not to hurt companies but to spur the government to tighten regulations
Swati Piramal who followed up her MBBS with a Master's in Public Health from Harvard University, is now Director, Strategic Alliances and Communications, Piramal Healthcare. She is a driven businesswoman who asks the tough questions that bring clarity to important decisions.