Leadership by Geoff Colvin

Most Powerful Women: The next generation

July 18, 2008: 12:05 PM ET

We're expanding our Most Powerful Women coverage this year to spotlight rising stars whom we think have a good chance to be on our annual list someday. I'll be interviewing three of them at an upcoming MPWomen dinner in San Francisco.

Fortune reporter Jessica Shambora, who is handling the MPWomen list research this year, asked our three panelists for their definition of power. Their responses reflected common themes around the ability to choose and to make an impact.

"Power is having the freedom to choose."

-- Christine Day, 46, CEO, lululemon athletica (LULU). Day spent 20 years at Starbucks (SBUX) before joining lululemon in January.

"Those with true power share the ability to influence, inspire and, ultimately, lead people to pursue a common goal and vision."

-- Stephanie Tilenius, 41, senior vice president and general manager, eBay North America (EBAY).

"Power is about control, and is at best temporary. It's better to be powerful -- to have an enduring belief in your abilities and your possibility for impact."

-- Sukhinder Singh Cassidy, 38, president, Asia-Pacific & Latin America Operation, Google (GOOG).

We look forward to talking with them more next week!

P.S. Fortune hosted a MPWomen dinner in New York in May featuring a panel on leadership. The panelists included Ursula Burns, president of Xerox (XRX); Andrea Jung, CEO of Avon (AVP); and Ann Moore, CEO of Time Inc.

Click here to watch video of the leaders reflecting on their experiences traveling and working abroad.

Click here to watch video of the leaders discussing what it took to get to the corner office and stay there.

Click here to watch video of the leaders sharing stories about their mentors.

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About This Author
Pattie Sellers
Pattie Sellers
Senior Editor at Large, Fortune
Executive Director of MPW/Live Content, Time Inc.

Pattie Sellers has written more than 20 Fortune cover stories including "Marissa Mayer: Ready to Rumble at Yahoo," "Muhtar Kent's New Coke," "Oprah's Next Act", "The $100 Billion Woman" (Melinda Gates), and "Gone with the Wind" (Ted Turner). She co-founded Fortune Most Powerful Women and oversees the Fortune MPW Summit, the preeminent gathering of women leaders in business and beyond—and programs such as Fortune MPW Entrepreneurs and the Fortune-U.S. State Department Global Women Leaders Mentoring Partnership. Pattie also develops Live Content across Time Inc. Her blog, Postcards, is about how power players lead and navigate their careers. Pattie won Time Inc.'s prestigious MVP award for her performance in 2012.

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MPWomen go Global

The Fortune/U.S. State Department Global Women Leaders Mentoring Partnership brings rising-star women from countries around the world to the U.S. for three-week mentorships with participants of the annual Fortune Most Powerful Women Summit - among them Ursula Burns of Xerox, Laura Lang of Time Inc., Marissa Mayer of Yahoo, and Tory Burch.

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