Top 20 Most Admired Companies

To create the top 20, Fortune and its survey partners at Hay Group asked the experts -- in this case, more than 3,700 people from dozens of industries -- to select the 10 companies they admire most. This year's winners all have strong records of innovation, leadership, and financial strength -- and their employees know it.

Goldman Sachs Group
Goldman Sachs Group
Top 20 rank: 10
Rank in Securities: 1
At a time when much of Wall Street is begging for capital infusions, it's not a shock that Goldman Sachs, which posted record profits in 2007, earned a spot on this list.

But it's not just about the money. Goldman's peers admire it because the profits are more than a matter of luck (though there's some of that too). Its results are a testament to its culture, an impossible-to-replicate mix of extreme aggression, deep paranoia, individual ambition, and robot-like teamwork.

Even as Goldman has morphed from a U.S. banking partnership into a global colossus, the firm's culture has kept it as nimble as a startup. And that's helped it balance its greed with a hyper-awareness of risk. Sound too simple? Just ask Goldman's rivals.  -Bethany McLean
See how Goldman Sachs Group rates in 8 key areas
Last updated March 03 2008: 2:10 PM ET

Apple

Berkshire Hathaway

General Electric

Google

Toyota Motor

Starbucks

FedEx

Procter & Gamble

Johnson & Johnson

Goldman Sachs

Target

Southwest Airlines

American Express

BMW

Costco

Microsoft

UPS

Cisco Systems

3M

Nordstrom
Most admired: Full list See how 317 top companies rate in 8 key areas. (more)
Most admired in your state California is home to the most corporations on this year's list. See the top-rated firms near you. (more)
Game: How admirable are you? Can you match each quote to the Most Admired company it refers to? See how admirably you score. (more)