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The World’s Most Admired Companies: How They Stack Up

OCH Blog Compañías admiradas

Este contenido es producido por OCH Group, Independent Member de GGI en Colombia.

Being an admired company is more difficult to achieve than just being a profitable company in terms of results. Being admired implies very different values that not everyone can achieve. Let's review what the world's most admired companies have done to achieve it.

The world’s most admired companies have built their reputations on their ability to grow into giants.


But in the latest edition of the World’s Most Admired Companies survey, it’s less about building an empire and more about the stability of those firms that sets them apart. Of the nine attributes of reputation Korn Ferry uses to rank firms, “soundness of financial position” was the one executives cited most often as key to a firm’s status, edging out “quality of products” and “quality of management.” “It’s probably no surprise that soundness of financial position comes out on top, especially in the current climate,” says Laura Manson-Smith, Korn Ferry’s global leader of organization strategy consulting.

Indeed, with organic growth more difficult amid uncertain economic and political conditions, executives are placing special value on the stability provided by a manageable debt load and significant amounts of cash, says Mark Royal, a senior client partner for Korn Ferry Advisory and a leader of the WMAC study. “The results paint a stabilizing picture,” he says.

Since 1997, Korn Ferry, in collaboration with Fortune, has identified the World’s Most Admired Companies of every year, examining how these highly regarded and highly successful firms stand out from their peers. This year, the study analyzed nearly 600 firms in 28 countries with feedback from thousands of their senior executives and directors.

List of most admired companies in the world

Apple remains the most admired company, with Microsoft, Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JPMorgan Chase rounding out the top five. The same firms also appeared in 2023’s top five, with the only change this year being Microsoft and Amazon swapping positions. The top 50 includes only five names that didn’t show up on the 2023 list: drug companies Eli Lilly (#34) and Moderna (#37), consumer credit-card firm Mastercard (#40), cosmetics maker L’Oréal (#43), and software company Adobe (#46).

The other reputational attributes cited in the list include a firm’s effectiveness in conducting business globally; its ability to attract, develop, and keep talent; its value as a long-term investment; its innovativeness; its wise use of corporate assets; and its responsibility to the community and environment. Eli Lilly, Mastercard, and Adobe moved into the top 50 in part because of their high rankings in innovativeness.

Several new industry leaders emerged. American Express (#8) now leads the Consumer Credit Card industry; Walmart (#9) takes over the General Merchandise top spot; Netflix (#23) now leads Entertainment; Eli Lilly leads Pharmaceuticals; and Bank of America (#42) leads Megabanks.



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