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An Introduction to the Powerlist…


The Powerlist is an annual publication that was first published in 2007 in a bid to provide professional role models for young people of African and African Caribbean heritage.

Since then it has brought a number of people to prominence who were hitherto unknown and has created a network of influencers, many of who do business with one another and some of whom have become friends. In many ways we are rebranding black Britain.

The publication is sent out primarily to schools and universities, but is becoming heavily requested by executive search firms as well, as it is recognized as a valuable source of talent.

We encourage people who make it on to the list to go to schools and talk to young people about how they achieved their success.

The Powerlist has spawned a charity, the Powerlist Foundation, which provides leadership courses for young people and also opening a school – an A Level college in central London that will eventually cater for 720 pupils, and which has the teaching of leadership skills at its core – in September 2015.

So, how do we decide on who makes the list?

First of all we should acknowledge that it is totally subjective. Our panel is tasked with deciding each year who makes the list. So, how do people get on the Powerlist?

It works like this. Powerful Media receive nominations from potential new nominees, and updates from the men and women who are already on the list. We then put them through a test based on our definition of the word influence, which we define as: ‘the ability to positively alter events and change lives as demonstrated over a protracted period of time’.

We give each nominee marks out of 10 on two indices: how influential they are in their immediate sphere of expertise and how far that influence reaches beyond that. The highest 150 are given to the panel to deliberate over, which they do for seven days before locking themselves in a room for eight hours in early September to deliberate. This year, their focus was on scale and giving back and these two principles guided their choices..



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