For many, the word “businessperson” connotes men in white shirts and stranglehold neckties. That stereotype may have held true in the 1950s, but since then, the appearance factor of the business world has evolved substantially.
Take women. Hot women have always populated the business world in some shape or form. We tasked ourselves with compiling a list of the hottest businesswomen we could think of, for your viewing pleasure. These women are accomplished both in the business and the looks departments. Get acquainted with these hotties, outside of the cube–and outside of the pantsuit.
10. Marissa Mayer
Business Accomplishments: High-level management at Google.
Marissa Mayer was one of the first 20 employees at Google, so she has obviously been influential in steering the company towards its massive success and market share dominance. She currently serves as Google’s VP of Search Product and User Experience and de facto spokesperson. Her job is to verify whether Google products are ready for user release. Early on, Melissa used to date Google co-founder Larry Page, but has since moved on to other pastures. She is free for the looking for everyone.
9. Arianna Huffington
Business Accomplishments: Founder of one of the most successful and influential websites ever.
The dynamic founder of the Huffington Post also boasts well-preserved good looks. She has quite the journalistic background, ranging from a panelist position on the BBC radio to co-hosting an Air America show. She used to be a vehement anti-Clintonian conservative; the HuffPo shows she has swung the other direction. Her hot qualities, meanwhile, stayed the same.
8. Rachel Ray
Business Accomplishments: Her brand. She can basically sell anything she wants at this point.
In fewer than seven years, Rachael Ray, 39, has radically changed the way America cooks dinner. Her perky-girl-next-door swagger, her catchphrases for techniques and her dinner ideology of simpler, less expensive and just in time have sold billions of books and placed her at the top of the talent love heap at the Food Network, which has changed its focus from information exchange to helpful encouragement.
As the author of the “30 Minute Meals” series and show of the same name, she parlayed her Food Network Success into a daytime talk show carried and blessed by Oprah herself and Harpo Productions. She also launched “Everyday with Rachel Ray” a lifestyle and Entertainment magazine focused on home and entertaining.
Recently she just launched a line of Dog Food called “Nutrish” cashing in on her quirky phrases that have endeared her to many.
7. Gina Bianchini
Business Accomplishments: CEO of wildly successful Ning. Founder of Harmonic Communications and benefactor of its liquidation event.
Bianchini co-founded Ning, a customizable social networking platform, with Netscape founder Marc Andreessen in 2004. This Stanford MBA and former Goldman Sachs financial analyst has guided Ning’s unique platform, where users build their own features, to astonishing rates of success, from unnecessary $60 million VC rounds to phenomenal growth rates. She is also really hot.
6. Queen Rania of Jordan
Business Accomplishments: Board member of the World Economic Forum, founded the Queen Rania Center for Entrepreneurship
Queen Rania is a major advocate of women’s rights around the world, including the Middle East. She was ranked 81st in the Forbes 2005 100 most powerful women of the world list. She is a major philanthropist and supporter of the micro-fund movement.
5. Alexis Glick
Business Accomplishments: Vice President of Fox Business News & former Executive Director at Morgan Stanley
Alexis Glick is the hot on-air personality that (we think) is the main reason that millions of men watch Fox Business Network each week. She is hugely influential in the business world because of her control over strategy and programming decisions at Fox Business Network.
4. Tyra Banks
Business Accomplishments: Her brand and influence through her show. TV & film production. Product lines. Real estate development.
A successful model most of her life and an young female African-American role model to many, Tyra Banks could have stopped there, but has only risen since.
Starting in May 2003 her creation-America’s Next Top Model started modestly and has grown into a worldwide hit and is embarking upon its 10th cycle. The most recent edition was the network’s top-rated series, averaging 5.2 million viewers weekly. And The Tyra Banks Show — a broad mix of women’s issues and frothy fare — is now a talk-show force to be reckoned with: 4.3 million adult female viewers tuned in weekly this past November sweeps, and, with a median age of 40, Tyra has the youngest talk-show audience in daytime. (Oprah’s median age is 55.) Now the 34-year-old has a broader goal in mind: world domination. (Yes, seriously.) With a recent multimillion-dollar TV-and-film-production deal through Warner Bros. Entertainment, along with retail and real estate projects in development, Banks is poised to become the most influential woman in television since the almighty O herself.
3. Heidi Klum
Business Accomplishments: Executive Producer, Project Runway. Clothing and accessory lines. Brand sponsorships.
From fashion runways to Project Runway, Heidi Klum’s goldilocks and 1,000 watt smile has lit up magazine covers, stages and screens from here to Milan since 1992. Bronze and toned, her body splashed the cover of Sports Illustrated and earned her the coveted “Angel” position with Victoria’s Secret. She has appeared in several television shows and movies, which led her to pitch and secure the phenomenally popular and only reality-show winner of the Peabody Award “Project Runway” on Bravo as Host, Judge and Executive Producer. Behind her playful lips and cutesy German accent lies the mind of brilliant businesswoman dedicated to expanding her empire; which in 2008 Forbes estimated at 14 million a year and growing, placing her 2nd on the Top Model list. With her own clothing and accessories line coming in 2009, spokesperson deals with Jordache and VW and her countless appearances on film and television, there are a lot chances to salivate over Heidi for a long time.
2. Beyonce Knowles
Business Accomplishments: Entertainment empire, endorsement deals, fashion lines.
After ditching Destiny’s Child to go solo in 2003, the Houston native has released two platinum albums and built a wildly successful entertainment empire that includes fashion, film and publishing deals. She sold $50 million in tickets on a recent tour. Her endorsement contracts, with L’Oréal, American Express and others, bring in $10 million annually.
1. Sara Blakely
Business Accomplishments: Founder of SPANX product line for women.
Sara Blakely literally embodies the can-do spirit that lies within the heart of just about all of us. A few years ago, when frustrated in her search to find a pair of pantyhose that would offer some slimming features, she took $5,000 from her savings and started her own company to produce exactly that kind of product. With that product, called SPANX, Sara Blakely quickly became a hero to women all over the world while, at the same time, helping to revive an industry that had been in a slump for more than a decade. Sara now divides her time between her business ventures and public speaking engagements in which she inspires and motivates women to take on the world through involvements with business, community, and politics. In her keynote speeches, she talks about her Sara Blakely Foundation, which is dedicated to supporting and empowering women around the globe. By both her words and actions, she has become widely recognized as a powerful force in both the celebrity world and the world of business and finance.