Apple Inc. has been ranked as the #1 World's Most Admired Company in a survey conducted by Fortune magazine. Conducted amongst business executives y the Hay Group, Apple outranked Berkshire Hathaway (#2), Toyota (#3), Google (#4) and even Microsoft (#10) as the company most admired in any industry.
The survey has two components, one in which executives rank companies in their own industry. In this part of the survey, Apple was ranked as the #2 most-admired computing company, behind Xerox, and ahead of HP, Canon, Sun Microsystems, and Dell (in order).
In the second part of the survey, Hay Group, "asked 4,047 executives, directors, and securities analysts who had responded to the industry surveys to select the ten companies they admired most."
Those executives then from a list made up of the companies comprised of the top 25% in last year's surveys and those that finished in the top 20% of their respective industries. In this part of the survey, executives could vote for any company in any industry.
It was in this survey that Apple was selected as the single-most admired company. It may be telling that Apple's competitors don't admire Apple as much as the broader business community, but that could well be part and parcel of how Apple has been able to become so successful in recent years -- the company does things differently than its computing peers, and some of those peers don't appreciate it.
In Fortune's one-paragraph write-up of Apple, the magazine wrote:
"Why it's admired: It's been a rocky year for Apple: CEO Steve Jobs' health made headlines, and critics said Cupertino wasn't being open enough about it. But customers remained loyal to the brand that made white ear buds cool. As much of the computer industry struggled, Apple shipped 22.7 million iPods during its first quarter (up 3 percent from last year), 2.5 million Macs (up 9 percent), and 4.4 million iPhones. No wonder Apple tops our Most Admired list for the second year in a row."