A third of Australians want to work for the late Steve Jobs, according to a survey.
Research commissioned by PR agency Hotwire found that Apple’s former boss was the second most popular choice of CEO to serve under, after Virgin Group founder Richard Branson.
Each respondent listed five CEOs they most want to work for. More than 40 per cent wanted to work for Branson, while Jobs – who died in 2011 – was joint second alongside Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg (33 per cent).
The most popular Australian CEO to work for was Qantas’ Alan Joyce, selected by 21 per cent of respondents.
SpaceX and Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Satya Nadella from Microsoft were rated fourth and fifth.
Tech-driven business leaders formed the majority of the top 21 ranking, which included Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, Canva CEO Melanie Perkins, Atlassian’s chief executives Scott Farquhar and Mike Cannon-Brookes, Hewlett Packard’s Meg Whitman and IBM’s Ginny Rommetty.
Hotwire Australia country manager, Mylan Vu said the results showed that people sought CEOs who were innovative and progressive.
“The results highlight how closely the personal brand of a CEO is impacting people’s actions regarding where they work and their motivations in the workplace,” she said.
“The current and next generations of workers will be looking to Australian business leaders for innovative and tech-driven ideas, and there’s a huge opportunity to engage with the workforce through simple communication and by listening to employees’ desires for flexible work environments.”
Other favoured business chiefs locally were Nine Entertainment CEO David Gyngell; News Corp's Rupert Murdoch; former Australia Post CEO Ahmed Fahour; former Rio Tinto chief Sam Walsh; Grant King, formerly of Origin Energy; ShowPo CEO Jane Lu, and Tony Pignata of Sydney FC.
A leader with vision
When asked which areas respondents own bosses could improve, the most popular answers were speaking more with staff (noted by 37 per cent of respondents) and offering more support and flexibility in the workplace (35 per cent).
A quarter of respondents voted ‘attitude’, ‘vision’ and ‘innovation’ as changes they would like to see from their boss.
The survey highlighted some demographic differences in what individuals look for in a CEO.
Branson was significantly more popular with those aged over 35 while Jobs and Zuckerberg scored more highly with 18-24 year olds and were listed by more than half of the age group.
Male respondents were more likely to want to see more innovation and vision from their bosses and CEOs, while female respondents considered communication and flexible workplaces as more important.
Musk and Nadella were considerably more popular among males than females.
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