Having a midlife crisis?
It could propel you to a position of power, at least, if your name is Bill Gates.
According to Forbes' list of the World's Most Powerful People 2011, Gates has had the most productive midlife crisis in history, which is why they named him the fifth most powerful person in the world.
Gates, who resigned from his CEO position at Microsoft in 2008, made the list largely because of the efforts he and his wife made with their philanthropic project called the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Only Barack Obama, Vladimir Putin, Hu Jintao, and Angela Merkel -- all of whom are the head of state for various countries -- topped Gates on the list.
Mark Zuckerberg came in at the No. 9 spot. He's the highest ranked full-time entrepreneur that made the list and is also easily the youngest person in the top ten at the age of 27. The second youngest in the top ten is David Cameron, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, at age 45, who placed tenth on the list.
Compared to the list of Most Powerful People of 2010 list, the only new person in the top ten is Mark Zuckerberg. He's filled the void left by Sonia Gandhi, President of the Indian National Congress, who has now moved to the No. 11 spot.
The list is compiled by evaluating four different factors: how many people a person has influence over, financial resources controlled by that person, whether the person influential in more than one arena, and how actively [the person] wields their power. While the list has shuffled somewhat, it's apparent that those who become powerful, stay powerful.
For a list of leaders that did lose their power, check out Forbes' list of World's Most Powerful: Drop-Offs, which includes names like Steve Jobs, Osama Bin Laden and Dominique Strauss-Kahn.