Kevin Mansell

In community-based business insights platform provider Owler’s inaugural chief executive officer “likeability study,” Costco’s Craig Jelinek took the top spot in the U.S. public company rankings.

Owler developed a “favorability algorithm” to determine the results. Jelinek garnered a 94.9 out of 100 score in the top 50 public company rankings, and was followed in second place by Arne M. Sorenson of Marriott with a score of 93.9. Richard D. Fairbank, ceo of Capital One, came in third with a score of 93.8.

Sorted by industry and including private companies, the ceo of home goods company Wooden Street, Lokendra Ranawat, took the top spot in retail and e-commerce with a score of 98.5. Shaw Industries’ Vance D. Bell took the number-two spot with a score of 96.6. Jelinek’s score placed him third on this list. Peter Agnefjall of Ikea came in fourth, and was followed by Kevin Mansell of Kohl’s Corp.

Jim Fowler, founder and ceo of Owler, said this is the first year “we’ve released an official ranking of the country’s most likable ceo’s. The results are based on a survey given to members of the Owler community. This includes employees and other stakeholders, competitors and the general public.”

Owler noted that the ranking can serve as a tool for people to garner insights about companies. Fowler said that with hiring season peaking, “the latest class to enter the workforce is doing their homework. This includes searching for dirt on company executives. Our ranking provides Millennial job-seekers the insights they need to help carve out a career path.”

Ceo’s who garnered lower scores included: Doug McMillon of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. with a score of 42.8; Marissa Mayer of Yahoo with a score of 32.8, and Oscar Munoz of United Airlines with a score of 21.5. Regarding Munoz, his score was compiled after the passenger incident in April.

The methodology involved using Owler’s proprietary algorithm on its more than one million active users. “The favorability algorithm evaluates the weighting of a ceo’s review based on the specifics of the person who rated the ceo. Inputs from employees, followers, competitors and other stakeholders are weighted differently in the model, and the algorithm ensures that multiple inputs cannot be submitted by the same individual,” the company said.

Fowler said being named the “most beloved ceo in the country is no easy achievement for any industry leader. This requires ceo’s to have a strong vision for the future with the leadership skills needed to move their organization towards reaching these goals.”


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