Mapped: The 50 Richest Women in the World in 2021
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According to a recent census by Wealth-X, 11.9% of global billionaires are women. Even at such a minority share, this group still holds massive amounts of wealth.
Using a real-time list of billionaires from Forbes, we examine the net worth of the 50 richest women in the world and which country they’re from.
Where are the World’s Richest Women?
The richest woman in the world, Francoise Bettencourt Meyers and family own 33% of stock in L’Oréal S.A., a French personal care brand. She is also the granddaughter of its founder.
In April 2019, L’Oréal and the Bettencourt Meyers family pledged $226 million (€200 million) towards the repair of the Notre Dame cathedral after its devastating fire.
Following closely behind is Alice Walton of the Walmart empire—also the world’s richest family. Together with her brothers, they own over 50% of the company’s shares. That’s a pretty tidy sum, considering Walmart raked in $524 billion in revenues in their 2020 fiscal year.
Other family ties among the richest women in the world include Jacqueline Mars and her four granddaughters, heiresses to a slice of the Mars Inc. fortune in candy and pet food—and all of them make this list.
|Rank||Name||Net Worth ($B)||Country|
|#1||Francoise Bettencourt Meyers & family||$71.4||🇫🇷 France|
|#2||Alice Walton||$68.0||🇺🇸 United States|
|#3||MacKenzie Scott||$54.9||🇺🇸 United States|
|#4||Julia Koch & family||$44.9||🇺🇸 United States|
|#5||Yang Huiyan & family||$31.4||🇨🇳 China|
|#6||Jacqueline Mars||$28.9||🇺🇸 United States|
|#7||Susanne Klatten||$25.8||🇩🇪 Germany|
|#8||Zhong Huijuan||$23.5||🇨🇳 China|
|#9||Laurene Powell Jobs & family||$22.1||🇺🇸 United States|
|#10||Iris Fontbona & family||$21.0||🇨🇱 Chile|
|#11||Zhou Qunfei & family||$18.6||🇭🇰 Hong Kong|
|#12||Fan Hongwei & family||$17.9||🇨🇳 China|
|#13||Gina Rinehart||$17.4||🇦🇺 Australia|
|#14||Charlene de Carvalho-Heineken & family||$17.1||🇳🇱 Netherlands|
|#15||Wu Yajun||$16.3||🇨🇳 China|
|#16||Abigail Johnson||$15.0||🇺🇸 United States|
|#17||Kirsten Rausing||$13.5||🇸🇪 Sweden|
|#18||Kwong Siu-hing||$13.0||🇭🇰 Hong Kong|
|#19||Lu Zhongfang||$12.7||🇨🇳 China|
|#20||Wang Laichun||$12.7||🇨🇳 China|
|#21||Cheng Xue||$10.8||🇨🇳 China|
|#22||Massimiliana Landini Aleotti & family||$10.6||🇮🇹 Italy|
|#23||Denise Coates||$9.9||🇬🇧 United Kingdom|
|#24||Lam Wai Ying||$9.1||🇭🇰 Hong Kong|
|#25||Ann Walton Kroenke||$9.1||🇺🇸 United States|
|#26||Savitri Jindal & family||$8.7||🇮🇳 India|
|#27||Nancy Walton Laurie||$8.2||🇺🇸 United States|
|#28||Blair Parry-Okeden||$8.2||🇺🇸 United States|
|#29||Diane Hendricks||$8.0||🇺🇸 United States|
|#30||Christy Walton||$7.8||🇺🇸 United States|
|#31||Zhao Yan||$7.8||🇨🇳 China|
|#32||Zeng Fangqin||$7.6||🇨🇳 China|
|#33||Magdalena Martullo-Blocher||$7.5||🇨🇭 Switzerland|
|#34||Rahel Blocher||$7.4||🇨🇭 Switzerland|
|#35||Marie-Hélène Habert||$7.2||🇫🇷 France|
|#36||Pamela Mars||$7.2||🇺🇸 United States|
|#37||Victoria Mars||$7.2||🇺🇸 United States|
|#38||Valerie Mars||$7.2||🇺🇸 United States|
|#39||Marijke Mars||$7.2||🇺🇸 United States|
|#40||Sandra Ortega Mera||$7.1||🇪🇸 Spain|
|#41||Antonia Ax:son Johnson & family||$7.0||🇸🇪 Sweden|
|#42||Sofie Kirk Kristiansen||$6.9||🇩🇰 Denmark|
|#43||Agnete Kirk Thinggaard||$6.9||🇩🇰 Denmark|
|#44||Li Haiyan||$6.7||🇨🇳 China|
|#45||Ronda Stryker||$6.6||🇺🇸 United States|
|#46||Marie Besnier Beauvalot||$6.3||🇫🇷 France|
|#47||Zheng Shuliang & family||$6.2||🇨🇳 China|
|#48||Meg Whitman||$5.8||🇺🇸 United States|
|#49||Chan Laiwa & family||$5.8||🇨🇳 China|
|#50||Maria Asuncion Aramburuzabala & family||$5.8||🇲🇽 Mexico|
All data as of January 15, 2021 (9AM PST)
MacKenzie Scott, ranked #3 on the list, was heavily involved in the early days of turning Amazon into an e-commerce behemoth. She was involved in areas from bookkeeping and accounts to negotiating the company’s first freight contract. Her high-profile divorce from Jeff Bezos captured the headlines, notably because she gained control over 4% of Amazon’s outstanding shares.
The total value of these shares? An eye-watering $38.3 billion—propelling her to the status of one of America’s richest people.
However, MacKenzie Scott has more altruistic ventures in mind for this wealth. In 2020, she gave away $5.8 billion towards causes such as climate change and racial equality in just four months, and is a signatory on the Giving Pledge.
[Scott’s near $6 billion donation has] to be one of the biggest annual distributions by a living individual.
—Melissa Berman, CEO of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors
Looking towards the East, Yang Huiyan became the richest woman in Asia after inheriting 70% of shares in the property development company Country Garden Holdings. The company went public in 2007, raising $1.6 billion in its IPO—an amount comparable to Google’s IPO in 2004.
To aid frontline health workers during the pandemic, Country Garden Holdings set up robotic, automated buffet stations to safely serve medical staff in Wuhan, China.
While the 50 richest women in the world have certainly made progress, the overall tier of billionaires is still very much a boys’ club. One thing that also factors into this could be the way this wealth is spent.
As many female billionaires inherited their wealth, a large share are more inclined to contribute to charitable causes where they can use their money to make an impact. What percentage of billionaires by gender have contributed at least $1 million in donations over the past five years?
Made $1mm in donations over last 5 years (%)
|Source of wealth||👩 Female philanthropists||👨 Male philanthropists|
Meanwhile, male billionaires are more likely to donate to charity if they built the wealth themselves—and many companies that fall into this category certainly stepped up during the early days of the COVID-19 crisis.
How Accountable Teams Drive Performance in Challenging Times
Roughly 80% of teams are seen as mediocre or weak. This graphic explores the strategies leaders can use to create accountable teams.
The future of work is changing, and new rules are being written before our very eyes.
Teams are more important now than ever before, but many of them are struggling to step up and drive high performance when it matters most.
Creating a Culture of Accountability
Today’s infographic from the bestselling author Dr. Vince Molinaro demonstrates how leaders can create an environment where truly accountable teams can flourish, and employees are inspired to do their best work.
>> Download Dr.Vince Molinaro’s How to Build an Accountable Team
Accountable Leaders Build Accountable Teams
Weak, mediocre teams demonstrate behaviors that can breed a toxic work environment, such as working in isolation or not demonstrating trust among other team members.
In order to combat mediocre teams, leaders must create a culture of accountability in their organization where individuals can step up and be accountable.
“No group ever becomes a team until they can hold themselves accountable as a team.”
—The Discipline of Teams, Jon R. Katzenbach and Douglas K. Smith
When teams take full responsibility for their actions, they manage most issues themselves rather than looking to leadership to solve problems.
Overall, accountable teams demonstrate two critical dimensions: team clarity and team commitment.
1. Team Clarity
Accountable teams should have full clarity about the business they operate in by having the ability to:
- Anticipate external trends both in and outside of their industry.
- Have clarity on the strategy and purpose of their organization.
- Understand the expectations of their stakeholders and the interdependencies that exist with other parts of the company.
- Know what needs to get done and how it needs to be done.
2. Team Commitment
Accountable teams also demonstrate a high degree of commitment needed to deliver results. They do so in the following ways:
- Have a deep sense of commitment to driving success.
- Invest time in working across the organization.
- Work to make their team as strong as it can be.
- Show a deep commitment to one another.
As a leader, these two dimensions are invaluable as a way of thinking about driving mutual accountability and sustaining high performance for their organization over the long-term.
Accountable Teams Drive Extraordinary Performance
Leaders who invest in leveling up their team and promote a culture of accountability can experience transformational benefits, such as:
- Everyone is clear and aligned on what needs to get done.
- Each team member is accountable, pulls their weight, and goes to great lengths to support one another.
- Everyone feels safe challenging one another and confronting issues head-on without fear.
- Team members leverage the unique capabilities of others.
- Everyone works hard but also manages to have fun and celebrate success.
These benefits translate to strong results within organizations. In fact, research shows that high- performing companies have more accountable teams compared to average or poorly performing companies.
The Whole is Greater Than the Sum of its Parts
Whether it’s an executive team, a departmental team, a cross-functional team, or even a team made up of external partners, organizations have become increasingly reliant on teams to achieve success and guide them through uncertainty.
Given the importance of teams in today’s ever-changing world, it is clear we need to increase our efforts when it comes to building truly accountable teams.
As a leader, you are being counted on to demonstrate accountability and create high-performing teams. Are you stepping up?
Flowchart: Are You Working for a Toxic Boss?
Most people have had bad bosses, but is your boss toxic? This flowchart helps you discover if you have a toxic boss and what to do about it.
Flowchart: Are You Working for a Toxic Boss?
The experience of less-than-ideal work situations are common, and the global pandemic has likely heightened challenges for bosses and employees alike. How can mediocre or outright hostile leadership impact your ability to work well?
This flowchart from Resume.io helps you figure out if you’ve got a toxic boss weighing you down. It covers seven archetypes of toxic bosses, and how to respond to each one.
The 7 Types of Toxic Bosses
Barbara Kellerman, a professor of public leadership at the Harvard Kennedy School identifies seven types of toxic bosses that can exist.
|Number||Toxic Boss Type||Description|
|#1||Incompetent Boss||Unable or unwilling to do their job well|
|#2||Rigid Boss||Confuses inflexibility with strength|
|#3||Intemperate Boss||Lacks self-knowledge and self-control|
|#4||Callous Boss||Lacks empathy and kindness|
|#5||Corrupt Boss||Steals or cheats to promote their own interests|
|#6||Insular Boss||Is cliquish or unreachable|
|#7||Evil Boss||Causes pain to further their sense of power and dominance|
Some bosses simply don’t have the capacity to do their jobs, which makes it more difficult for their employees. Others can be corrupt or callous, creating a highly unmotivating work environment.
But how many people are in this situation?
To give a few quick examples, around 13% of all employees in Europe work under a toxic boss. In the U.S., a whopping 75% say they have left a job primarily because of a bad boss.
What’s so Bad about a Bad Boss?
Bosses can make or break your job experience. Having a toxic boss can cause your quality of work to suffer, which can then trickle down to impact your overall career.
In fact, Harvard Business Review found that a toxic work environment can lead to decreased motivation and employee disengagement. This has significant knock-on effects such as:
- 37% higher absenteeism
- 60% more errors in their work
- 18% lower productivity
According to the same study, this can cause companies to have 16% lower profitability and a 65% lower share price over time.
The physical side effects are not to be underestimated, either. One Swedish study found that a bad boss who increases your job strain can, in tandem, increase your chance of cardiac arrest by 50%. Additionally, a study out of Stanford found that mismanagement in the American workplace and subsequent stress could potentially be responsible for 120,000 deaths per year.
Tips to Deal with a Toxic Boss
Bad bosses can hurt the company, the overall work environment, and can impact your professional growth and personal health.
So, what can you do about it?
|Number||Toxic Boss Type||Solution|
|#1||Incompetent Boss||Use initiative|
|#2||Rigid Boss||Use the power of persuasion|
|#3||Intemperate Boss||Look for opportunities|
|#4||Callous Boss||Ask for a 1-on-1 meeting|
|#5||Corrupt Boss||Find co-workers who share your concerns|
|#6||Insular Boss||Offer them opportunities to open up|
|#7||Evil Boss||Take a stand|
Different kinds of bosses require different approaches, and some simply aren’t worth putting up with. For instance, taking initiative with an incompetent boss is one relatively easy solution, but having a 1-on-1 with a callous boss takes more effort. An evil boss requires intervention from HR.
If you don’t have a toxic boss, consider yourself lucky. Here are two ways to keep your working relationship strong:
- Take initiative
- Keep up open communication
- Ask for constant feedback so you know where you stand
- Under-promise and over-deliver
What Can Bosses Do?
Toxic bosses can have disastrous consequences on employees and companies. According to one Gallup survey, at minimum, 75% of the reasons for voluntary turnover can be influenced by managers.
After looking at some of the ways employees can address toxic bosses, how can bosses ensure their work environment is healthy? Harvard Business Review recommends four main things:
- Encourage social connections
- Show empathy
- Go out of your way to help
- Encourage employees to talk to you—especially about their problems
The future of work may be changing, with remote work becoming more popular and feasible. This can pose problems in creating a strong work culture.
However, if bosses and employees can work together to foster a positive and healthy work environment, everyone, including the bottom line, will benefit.
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