Vision. Brains. Collaborative. Relentless. Respectful. When these key qualities, whether learned or innate and honed by time and experience, come together, they create a powerful figure in the world of integrated communications. PRWeek asked peers, colleagues, friends, and mentors to shed light on the leader behind the title.
As an added bonus, Power List heavy hitters Andy Polansky and Richard Edelman go one on one to talk about the most important trends defining the world of communications and today's intensively competitive market.
Bernie Sanders: The democratic presidential candidate built a massive, dedicated grassroots following by appealing to the millennial generation and pushed Hillary Clinton all the way.
The Stanford rape victim: She wrote and read a powerful 12-page letter to her attacker after he received only a six-month sentence. The letter has been viewed more than 11 million times on BuzzFeed.
Watson: Far beyond its early days of winning Jeopardy!, IBM’s computer system analyzes and learns from natural language to help users across areas from cybersecurity to healthcare.
Sheryl Sandberg: COO of Facebook, author of Lean In, and advocate for equal treatment of women in the workplace has shared her personal struggle around the sudden loss of her husband.
Justin Trudeau: The second youngest Canadian Prime Minister and a politician exudes authenticity and accessibility, especially with the younger demographic, and is looking for more diversity in government appointments.
Dan Schulman: Schulman communicated PayPal’s position on LGBT rights with striking clarity: by pulling the plug on a planned $3.6 million facility in North Carolina after the state passed its new House Bill 2 bathroom law.
John Legere: T-Mobile’s Legere is the embodiment of the Un-carrier, a walking, talking PR machine with a penchant for brash talk and savvy social media.
Kat Cole: From waitress to head of global training and helping Hooters grow from 100 to more than 400 locations internationally by 24, Cole is now group president of Focus Brands, working with Cinnabon, Auntie Anne’s, and Carvel. Her comms style is no nonsense, truthful, and goes the extra mile to make sure employees feel valued.
Elon Musk: Billionaire businessman, visionary extraordinaire, Musk has articulated a vision that has brought his audience to Mars’ doorstep — communications pro indeed.
Doug McMillon: At the helm of an often- divisive brand, McMillon conveys a corporate culture at Wal-Mart that emphasizes the well-being of employees, consumers, and the communities he serves.