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Well-liked: Zuckerberg tops employee-driven CEO rankings

Facebook's chieftain jumps to 99 percent approval from a middling 85 percent in Glassdoor's survey standings. Last year's winner, Apple's Tim Cook, takes a tumble.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg at TechCrunch Disrupt last September.
James Martin/CNET

Lots of CEOs make the news for being gruff, domineering, or brilliant, but oftentimes their employees have different impressions. Every year, careers site Glassdoor surveys hundreds of thousands of employees across all industries and then publishes its rankings of the 50 highest rated CEOs (see list below).

And, for 2013, Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg took the top honor.

Despite shareholder lawsuits over its botched IPO and mixed reaction to Timeline and Graph Search, the social network's employees gave Zuckerberg a 99 percent approval rating over the past 12 months, which ended February 24. This is up 14 percentage points from last year.

A Facebook employee told Glassdoor that Facebook has "an open community from Zuck on down" and that there is "mutual trust companywide and sense of community and drive, instilled by our CEO who we all truly respect."

Twenty tech CEOs made the top 50 list this year, starting with SAP's Bill McDermott and Jim Hagemann Snabe sacking 2nd place. Also on the list were Qualcomm's Paul Jacobs in 8th place, Google's Larry Page in 11th place, Salesforce's Marc Benioff in 13th place, Amazon's Jeff Bezos in 16th place, Oracle's Larry Ellison in 46th place, Dell's Michael Dell in 49th place, and more.

Apple's Tim Cook was voted the top CEO last year with a 97 percent approval rating. Cook still made the list this year, but he dropped to the 18th spot with a 93 percent approval rating.

While women are making more of a splash in the tech world as of late, no female tech CEO made the list this year. HP's Meg Whitman made the list last year but her approval rating fell by one percentage point this year to 79 percent and she wasn't able to crack the top 50. Yahoo's Marissa Mayer received an 87 percent approval rating, but she didn't make top 50 because too few employees reviewed her to make Glassdoor's list.

While Glassdoor's list is a survey, it's voluntary rather than scientific. The figures come from employees who actively go to Glassdoor's site to rate their companies and bosses. Glassdoor says that this top 50 CEOs report only includes CEOs who received at least 100 employee ratings over the past year. Overall, more than 500,000 employees rated their CEO on Glassdoor over the past 12 months. The average CEO approval rating on Glassdoor for all CEOs is 68 percent.