Forbes’s list of 100 innovators only includes one woman, and Twitter has some corrections

Forbes’s list of 100 innovators only includes one woman, and Twitter has some corrections

On September 3rd, Forbes released its “America’s Most Innovative Leaders” list—a ranking of the “most creative and successful business minds of today,” as the article reads. Out of 100 innovative leaders, only one name on the list belongs to a woman. And Twitter is (rightfully) pissed.
The ranking was completed by business school professors Jeff Dyer and Nathan Furr, along with consultant Curtis Lefrandt. They measured the leadership qualities of top American CEOs and founders based on media reputation, social connections, value creation, and investor expectations.
They also limited themselves to only ranking leaders of U.S. firms with greater than $10 billion market value, of the 50 largest private U.S. firms to go public over the past five years, and of U.S. firms within the top 100 companies on the most recent Forbes Most Innovative Growth Companies list, as the article “How We Rank America’s 100 Most Innovative Leaders” explains.
Barbara Rentler, the CEO of Ross, was the only woman to place on the list. She placed 75th out of 100 and didn’t even get a photo.

Not even a *photo* of Barbara Rentler, the only woman on Forbes’ list of (100 ) America’s Most Innovative Leaders. Just a silhouette of some dude.— Eric Oesterle (@erico) September 6, 2019

The ranking is extremely telling of the gender bias in both the American corporate and tech industries. Could Forbes have shifted its ranking system to include more women? Absolutely. Rather than pointing out and somewhat celebrating the injustice of gender bias, Forbes could have inspired up-and-coming female entrepreneurs by drawing attention to more innovating women to look up to.

On @Forbes’s list of America’s 100 “Most Innovative Leaders,” there are twice as many men named Stanley as there are women of any name.And there are only two Stanleys.That’s right: 99 of America’s 100 most innovative leaders are men, @Forbes says.— Anand Giridharadas (@AnandWrites) September 6, 2019

Wow @forbes @jeffrey_dyer @nathan_furr @clefrandt @Mike_Federle. You should be ashamed of yourselves. It’s 2019 and America’s Most Innovative Leaders is 99 MEN AND ONE WOMAN? Un-bloody-believable. Did no one at Forbes query this? Where were @forbeswomen?— Cindy Gallop (@cindygallop) September 6, 2019

This is embarrassing, @forbes. One woman on a list of 100 most innovative leaders. The methodology—limiting “leaders” to US CEOs of $10bn market cap cos, weighting media perception and social following—just compounds existing biases. Do better, Forbes.— #ANGELS (@HashtagAngels) September 6, 2019

At first I thought maybe they had a men’s and women’s list…— Sarah Friar (@thefriley) September 5, 2019

However, because they didn’t, Twitter was forced to fill in the blanks. How about Emerson Collective founder and co-founder of the Climate Leadership Council Laurene Powell Jobs? Or former PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi?

“2 male professors team up with male consultant to choose most innovative leaders.” How about Laurene Powell Jobs, Indra Nooyi, other female tech leaders, female social entrepreneurs????— Global Mama (@SLenzRashid) September 7, 2019

Or the ladies behind EMILY’s List, the American political action committee that aims to help elect pro-choice Democratic female candidates to office?

Another day in which I’m so grateful to work at a place looking to change shit like this. (And not for nothing, Forbes, but the women who created (Ellen Malcolm) and then grew (Stephanie Schriock) EMILY’s List are innovators in my mind.)— Christina Reynolds (@creynoldsnc) September 7, 2019

There are so many amazing women leaders that could have been included on this list. We’re saddened by the wasted potential.

Ginni Rometty, IBM! The list is quite gobsmackingly terrible.— zibi (@zibijamal) September 7, 2019

Honestly, how did these women not make @Forbes list?— Aubrey Blanche (@adblanche) September 7, 2019

Based on their criteria, there are women who should have made the list. CEO of YouTube and Lockheed Martin to name two. The list doesn’t make sense. If you were asked to list presidential candidates and you listed all the guys andWarren at the end but left out all the other women— Queen Jasnah Kholin (@mlyngrant) September 8, 2019

Luckily, Time is picking up the pieces. Phew.

@TIME to the rescue— Elif Oker (@DrElifOker) September 7, 2019

It’s 2019, Forbes. Do better.
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