Chairman and CEO, Cisco
"What do you think?" Turning the tables on his questioners is a Chambers trademark, and therein lies a key to the power of Cisco's CEO. The soft-spoken West Virginian has turned listening into the art of making a sale - and few sell better. Everywhere he goes he makes converts to the Internet. Cisco's equipment, far more than any other company's, tells all those digital bits where to go. Without it the world would come to a standstill.
At less than $30, the stock is far below its split-adjusted peak of $80 in 2000. But financially Cisco is stronger than ever, and Chambers deserves a lot of the credit. Revenues for fiscal 2007 were $35 billion, up 22%. At $7.3 billion, profits rose 31% - and have climbed almost threefold since 2000. --David Kirkpatrick