UK Markets open in 6 hrs 8 mins

Revealed: The UK's 20 best chief executives of 2021

·4-min read
Larry Fink, Chief Executive Officer of BlackRock. Photo: Reuters
Larry Fink, CEO of BlackRock. Photo: Reuters

BlackRock (BLK) chief Larry Fink came out on top of Glassdoor’s Employee Choice Awards for the Top CEOs in 2021, with an approval rating of 99%.

CEOs of tech companies Microsoft (MSFT) and Salesforce (CRM) and the leaders of investment banks Morgan Stanley (MS) and UBS (UBS) also made it to the top 20 list compiled by Glassdoor, which provides reviews and insights for more than 1 million companies around the world.

Only one woman made it to the list: British Heart Foundation's Dr Charmaine Griffiths came in at number five, with a 98% approval rating.

“Through a challenging year, it’s inspiring to see top CEOs who, according to their employees, adapted to change, redefined visions and led with transparency while putting the health and safety of employees first," said Christian Sutherland-Wong, Glassdoor CEO.

Watch: Successful CEOs and where they went to college

Read more: Top CEOs earn more in days than Brits will in entire 2021

The awards are based on the input of employees who voluntarily provide anonymous feedback about their CEO’s leadership, along with insights into their job, work environment and employer over the past year.

According to Glassdoor Economic Research, "trust in senior leadership is a leading factor of long-term employee satisfaction and highly-rated CEOs are statistically linked to companies with great cultures and financial performance."

Here is the full list of the UK’s top 20 CEOs:

1. Laurence D Fink, BlackRock

CEO approval rating: 99%

Larry Fink, Chief Executive Officer of BlackRock, speaks at the Secretary General's High-Level meeting on Financing during 73rd United Nations General Assembly in New York, U.S., September 24, 2018. REUTERS/Caitlin Ochs
Larry Fink and seven partners founded BlackRock in 1988. Photo: Reuters

2. Satya Nadella, Microsoft 

CEO Approval Rating: 99%

Microsoft Corporation Chief Executive Officer, Satya Nadella, gestures as he addresses the Future Decoded Tech Summit in Bangalore on February 25, 2020. (Photo by Manjunath Kiran / AFP) (Photo by MANJUNATH KIRAN/AFP via Getty Images)
Satya Nadella has been leading Microsoft since 2014. Photo: Getty Images

3. Graeme Watt, Softcat (SCT.L)

CEO approval rating: 99%

Graeme Watt leads Softcat, an IT solutions and services provider. Photo: Softcat
Graeme Watt runs Softcat, an IT solutions and services provider. Photo: Softcat

4. Niels B Christiansen, the LEGO Group

CEO approval rating: 98%

Niels B. Christiansen joined the LEGO group in 2017. Photo: Getty Images
Niels B Christiansen joined the LEGO group in 2017. Photo: Getty Images

5. Dr Charmaine Griffiths, British Heart Foundation

CEO approval rating: 98%

Charmaine Griffiths did her PhD and postdoctoral research in Neuroscience at University College London. Photo: BHF
Dr Charmaine Griffiths did her PhD and postdoctoral research in Neuroscience at University College London. Photo: BHF

6. Ralph Hamers, UBS

CEO approval rating: 98%

Prior to joining UBS, Ralph Hamers served as CEO of ING Group. Photo: Getty Images
Prior to joining UBS, Ralph Hamers served as CEO of ING Group. Photo: Getty Images

7. Severin Schwan, Roche (ROG.SW)

CEO approval rating: 98%

Severin Schwan has been head of Swiss drugmaker Roche since 2008. Photo: Reuters
Severin Schwan has been head of Swiss drugmaker Roche since 2008. Photo: Reuters

8. Alan Jope, Unilever (ULVR.L)

CEO approval rating: 98%

Alan Jope first joined Unilever in the UK in 1985. Photo: Getty Images
Alan Jope first joined Unilever in 1985. Photo: Getty Images

9. Guillaume Faury, Airbus (AIR.PA)

CEO approval rating: 98%

Before Airbus, Guillaume Faury was at Peugeot. Photo: Reuters
Before Airbus, Guillaume Faury was at Peugeot. Photo: Reuters

10. Ramon Laguarta, PepsiCo (PEP)

CEO approval rating: 98%

Ramon Laguarta, a 25-year PepsiCo veteran, has served as CEO since October 3, 2018. Photo: Getty Images
Ramon Laguarta, a 25-year PepsiCo veteran, has served as CEO since October 2018. Photo: Getty Images

11. Michael S. Dell, Dell Technologies (DELL)

CEO approval rating: 98%

Michael Dell is the chairman and CEO of Dell Technologies, which was formed in 2016 when Dell merged with computer storage giant EMC. Photo: Reuters
Michael Dell is the chairman and CEO of Dell Technologies, which was formed in 2016 when Dell merged with computer storage giant EMC. Photo: Reuters

12. Mike Norris, Computacenter (CCC.L)

CEO approval rating: 98%

Mike Norris joined Computacenter’s sales team in 1984 after graduating from university. Photo: LinkedIn
Mike Norris joined Computacenter’s sales team in 1984 after graduating from university. Photo: LinkedIn

13. Marc Benioff, Salesforce

CEO approval rating: 98%

Marc Benioff founded Salesforce in 1999. Photo: Getty Images
Marc Benioff founded Salesforce in 1999. Photo: Getty Images

14. James P Gorman, Morgan Stanley

CEO approval rating: 98%

James Gorman was at Merrill Lynch before he joined Morgan Stanley. Photo: Reuters
James Gorman was at Merrill Lynch before he joined Morgan Stanley. Photo: Reuters

15. Éric Béranger, MBDA Missile Systems

CEO approval rating: 98%

Éric Béranger is a graduate engineer from the École Polytechnique and Telecom Paris. Photo: MBDA
Éric Béranger is a graduate engineer from the École Polytechnique and Telecom Paris. Photo: MBDA

16. Antonio Neri, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE)

CEO approval rating: 98%

Anotonio Neri is also a professor of drawing and painting. Photo: HPE
Anotonio Neri is also a professor of drawing and painting. Photo: HPE

17. Mark Schneider, Nestlé (NESN.SW)

CEO approval rating: 98%

Mark Schneider has served as CEO of Nestle since 2017. Photo: Reuters
Mark Schneider has served as CEO of Nestle since 2017. Photo: Reuters

18. Ian Diamond, Office for National Statistics

CEO approval rating: 97%

Ian Diamond was knighted in 2013 for his services to social science and higher education. Photo: Gov.uk
Ian Diamond was knighted in 2013 for his services to social science and higher education. Photo: Gov.uk

19. Simon Segars, Arm Holdings

CEO approval rating: 97%

Simon Segars. Photo: Getty Images
Simon Segars joined Arm as one of its first employees. Photo: Getty Images

20. Rob Donaldson, RSM UK

CEO Approval Rating: 97%

Rob Donaldson started his journey at RSM as an audit trainee in 1990. Photo: RSM
Rob Donaldson started his journey at RSM as an audit trainee in 1990. Photo: RSM

Watch: Verizon Consumer's CEO unveils blueprint of closing the digital divide

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting