FORTUNE and Korn Ferry Hay Group Announce This Year’s World’s Most Admired Companies

-Transformation, succession planning and attracting the best and brightest talent dominate this year’s list-

LOS ANGELES--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- The Hay Group division of Korn Ferry (NYSE: KFY), the preeminent global people and organizational advisory firm, and FORTUNE are pleased to announce their nineteenth annual World’s Most Admired Companies (WMAC) list. Find FORTUNE’s full list of the World’s Most Admired Companies here:

The World’s Most Admired Companies rankings are the definitive benchmark on corporate reputation and the Korn Ferry Hay Group/FORTUNE survey partnership provides deep insights into the business practices that make companies highly regarded and successful.

Preparing for the future

According to the Korn Ferry Hay Group research, preparing for the changing nature of work is important for WMACs with 78% saying it’s a “critical” or “very important” focus area. Additionally, three-quarters of WMACs report that looking 10 years into the future, they have taken action to determine the composition of the workforces their organizations will need, the capabilities that will be needed within their workforces, the capabilities that will be critical in their people leaders, and what will be required to attract, engage and retain talent.

“It’s not surprising that WMACs are taking a more proactive approach than their peer companies,” said Mark Royal a Senior Principal at Korn Ferry Hay Group. “Over the years we’ve found a hallmark of WMACs is consistently strong performance and reputations amid changing business conditions. WMACs don’t just sit back and wait for change to happen, they anticipate what’s around the corner and act before it’s too late.”

The next generation of leaders

In addition, WMACs anticipate growing their future leadership talent from within. Only 11% of WMACs indicated that the majority of future leaders will be recruited from outside their organization. By contrast, 81% indicated confidence that their companies are successfully preparing a pipeline of future leaders with the capabilities that will be required. When it comes to the leadership capabilities that will be most critical in 2025, WMACs place agility (91%), authenticity (87%), emotional intelligence (86%), embracing diversity (84%), a global mindset (78%) and working collaboratively with people in other organizations (78%) at the top of their list.

Winning with talent

Korn Ferry Hay Group’s research also found securing and engaging the right talent in the new world of work is a key focus for WMACs. When it comes to what will be important in attracting, engaging and retaining employees in 2025, WMACs are focused on supporting employees’ continuous growth and development (88%), providing a sense of purpose and meaning in work (80%) and offering a strong employer value proposition (77%).

“The Most Admired Companies recognize that future employees will value different things in the workplace and are clearly focused on employee engagement, total rewards and creating meaning at work, rather than just straight pay,” said Mel Stark a Vice President at Korn Ferry Hay Group.

To determine which companies have the strongest reputations within their industry, Korn Ferry Hay Group asked approximately 15,600 senior executives, outside directors and financial analysts to rate companies in their own industry on nine attributes of reputation. Responses were generated from Fortune 1000, Global 500 and other major non-U.S. companies. This year 458 U.S. companies and 234 non-U.S. companies across 29 countries were evaluated. To arrive at the top 50 WMAC All-Star list, Korn Ferry Hay Group also asked respondents to select ten companies they admire most, regardless of industry. If you’d like to learn more about rankings methodology, click here.

In addition to conducting the survey and analyzing the results to identify the WMAC, Korn Ferry Hay Group also performed supplemental research on how these organizations are preparing for the future of work. According to Korn Ferry Hay Group’s research, companies at the top of the list are taking a long term approach to planning for the future, preparing their next generation of leaders from within and changing how they secure and engage talent.

About the FORTUNE/Korn Ferry Hay Group World’s Most Admired Companies research

Korn Ferry Hay Group has collaborated with FORTUNE annually since 1997 to identify, select and rank the World’s Most Admired Companies and uncover the business practices that make these companies both highly regarded and successful. For more information on how the rankings are determined, please view the full methodology on Korn Ferry’s website.

For the supplemental research, the data were derived from a survey of 815 senior executives from companies that participated in the annual WMAC rankings. For the purpose of the study, WMACs were defined as those that are among the top 50 overall “all-stars” or ranked among the top three in their respective industries.

About Korn Ferry

Korn Ferry is the preeminent global people and organizational advisory firm. We help leaders, organizations, and societies succeed by releasing the full power and potential of people. Our nearly 7,000 colleagues deliver services through our Executive Search, Hay Group and Futurestep divisions. Visit for more information.


FORTUNE is a global leader in business journalism known for its unrivaled access to industry leaders and decision makers. Founded in 1930, FORTUNE has a worldwide circulation of more than 1 million and a readership of nearly 5 million and is the only business brand with editions in Europe and Asia, including a Chinese-language edition. FORTUNE is home to some of the strongest business franchises, including: FORTUNE 500, Best Companies, World's Most Admired Companies, Fastest Growing Companies and Most Powerful Women. The FORTUNE Conference Division extends the brand's mission into live settings, hosting a wide range of annual conferences for top-level executives, including the FORTUNE Global Forum and the Most Powerful Women Summit. FORTUNE's online home is, the world's largest dedicated business and finance Web site.

for Korn Ferry
Evan Stisser

Source: Korn Ferry