The Surprising List Of Best Performing CEOs In The World

Harvard Business Review has just calculated and released a list of best performing CEOs of the world. And surprisingly, heads of some of the world’s most well known companies are nowhere to be seen.

The rankings are based on a different metric this year – they go beyond absolute stock performance, and measure each company’s environmental, social, and governance (ESG) performance. 

This shift in the metrics factored in for rankings were responsible for pushing Amazon chief Jeff Bezos down from the first spot to 87 and pushed Lars Rebien SørensenDanish head of Novo Nordisk, purely based on the firm’s environmental and sustainability initiatives. The company benefits from, among other things, its decision to offer insulin at a steep discount to consumers in developing countries; its transparent and limited political lobbying practices; and its responsible policy on animal testing.

Here are the top 25 most effective CEOs, according to HBR

novo nordisk1. Lars Rebien Sørensen of Novo Nordisk

2. John Chambers of Cisco Systems

3. Pablo Isla of Inditex

4. Elmar Degenhart of Continental 

5. Martin Sorrell of WPP

6. Stephen Luzco of Seagate Technology

7. Jon Fredrik Baksaas of Telenor

8. George Scangos of Biogen

9. Michael Wolf of Swedbank

10. Fujio Mitarai of Canon

11. Leslie Wexner of L Brands

12. Howard Schultz of Starbucks

13. Florentino Pèrez Rodrìguez of Acs

14. Jacques Aschenbroich of Valeo

15. Benoit Potier of Air Liquide

16. Carlos Brito of Anheuser-Busch InBev

17. Lars Rasmussen of Coloplast

18. Kasper Rorsted of Henkel

19. Alexander Cutler of Eaton

20. Martin Winterkorn of Volkswagen (now resigned)

21. Mark Parker of Nike

22. Martin Gilbert of Aberdeen Asset Management 

23. Johan Thijs of KBC

24. Roberto Egydio Setubal of Itaù Unibanco 

25. Laurence Douglas Fink of Blackrock

Full list here.

Interestingly the only Indian CEO on this list, among a shining list of Indian CEOs at the helm of global companies is Ajay Banga of Mastercard.

According to Harvard Business Review the reason behind such a paradign shift in the way CEOs are ranked is that “in an era of big data and greater transparency, consumers and investors increasingly want to understand a company’s culture and values. They want to analyze its social behavior, not just its share price. These new measurements will only get better over time.”