The Best Startup CEOs To Work For, Ranked!

If you’re going to join a startup, you might as well join a rocket ship. And lately, there are a lot of billion-dollar startups to choose from.

Which of these healthy startups have the strongest leadership?

We examined CEO ratings on the job ratings site Glassdoor for companies with a $US3 billion valuation or higher with multiple employee reviews.

Then we ranked the CEOs, from lowest employee approval rating to highest.

12. Uber CEO Travis Kalanick has a 58% approval rating.

CEO: Travis Kalanick

CEO rating: 58%

Number of ratings: 254

What employees are saying: 'TK (Travis Kalanick) might be our hardest worker. He's smart and principled and very candid at our weekly company-wide TK Q&A. It's great having a leader you really believe in.'

What it does: Founded in 2009, Uber is a mobile logistics company that connects its users with drivers of private vehicles under Uber's contact. It offers different types of cars, from full-size luxury cars to smaller vehicles, and has a taxi-hailing service.

Valuation:$US18.2 billion; $US1.5 billion raised from Benchmark, Menlo Ventures, Google Ventures, Kleiner Perkins, First Round Capital, and others.

10. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk has an 82% approval rating.

CEO: Elon Musk

CEO rating: 82%

Number of ratings: 141

What employees are saying: 'Elon changes his mind on what he wants on a regular basis.' 'Is it 'cool' to work for Elon? Sure it is. He has vision and courage to impact the future. There's a price to pay for working for a 'cool' company.'

What it does: SpaceX makes, designs and launches rockets. It was founded in 2002.

Valuation:$US4.8 billion.

9. Airbnb's CEO Brian Chesky has an 85% approval rating.

CEO: Brian Chesky

CEO rating: 85%

Number of ratings: 74

What employees are saying: 'Very smart people with huge egos and unfriendly, cliquey vibe. Young management cares a lot about PR and creating a glamorous company.'

What it does: Founded in 2008, Airbnb lets people rent homes from one another for short stays as an alternative to traditional hotels.

Valuation:$US10 billion; $US794.8 million from Andreessen Horowitz, Founders Fund, Sequoia Capital, Greylock Partners and others.

8. Palantir CEO Alex Karp has a 91% approval rating.

CEO: Alexander Karp

CEO rating: 91%

Number of ratings: 69

What employees are saying: 'The people are top notch. There's a lot of job satisfaction in working on hard problems where the solution actually makes a difference. Flat organisation -- individuals are encouraged to take responsibility and act with minimal hand-holding from above.'

What it does: Founded in 2004, Palantir is a software and services company that specialises in data analysis. Its clients include government agencies like the CIA and the FBI.

Valuation: $US9 billion; $US950 million raised from Founders Fund, Tiger Global Management, Glynn Capital Management, and others.

6. Spotify CEO Daniel Ek has a 93% approval rating.

CEO: Daniel Ek

CEO rating: 93%

Number of ratings: 22

What employees are saying: 'The upper management is, I think, truly trying to reach out and understand what's happening behind the powerpoint slides. But I think they're too busy to realise that they just need to mix more with the rest of us to get a better feel of what is happening.'

What it does: Music streaming service founded in 2006.

Valuation:$US4 billion.

5. Square CEO Jack Dorsey has a 97% approval rating.

CEO: Jack Dorsey

CEO rating: 97%

Number of ratings: 91

What employees are saying: 'I feel both challenged and supported in my work. I genuinely trust Jack as a leader as well as the rest of our execs.'

What it does: Founded in 2009, Square helps small businesses accept credit cards as mobile payments. It also helps businesses with invoicing and mobile deposits.

Valuation: $US6 billion; raised $US590.5 million from KPCB, Khosla Ventures, Citi Ventures, Sequoia Capital, and others.

4. Dropbox CEO Drew Houston has a 99% approval rating.

CEO: Drew Houston

CEO rating: 99%

Number of ratings: 81

What employees are saying: 'The founders (Houston and Arash Ferdowsi) are very accessible and highly engaged in the day to day operations of the company -- as someone else pointed out (on Glassdoor), they definitely 'walk the walk.''

What it does: Founded in 2007, Dropbox stores files securely in the cloud so they can be accessed from any device.

Valuation:$US10 billion; $US1.1 billion raised from Accel Partners, Benchmark Capital, Greylock Ventures, and others.

3. Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel has a perfect 100% approval rating.

CEO: Evan Spiegel

CEO rating: 100%

Number of ratings: 7

What employees are saying: 'Amazing leadership team that inspires innovation and design thinking throughout the product and company culture.'

What it does: Founded in 2012, Snapchat is a photo messaging app allows users to send photos and videos that get deleted after a set period of time.

Valuation:$US10 billion; raised $US163 million from Benchmark, SV Angel, Coatue Management, General Catalyst, Lightspeed Venture Partners, and others.

2. Cloudera CEO Tom Reilly has a perfect 100% approval rating.

CEO: Tom Reilly

CEO rating: 100%

Number of ratings: 26

What employees are saying: 'The day I fell in love with the company was a day that Tom Reilly came down to chat with my team over lunch. In that conversation, our CEO told us that he wants Cloudera to be a place where people 'do what they think is best and ask for forgiveness later.''

What it does: Big data. Founded in 2008.

Valuation:$US4.1 billion.

1. Lending Club's CEO Renaud Laplanche has a perfect 100% approval rating.

CEO: Renaud Laplanche

CEO rating: 100%

Number of ratings: 40

What employees are saying: 'I've yet to meet one person here who doesn't say it's the best job they have ever had.'

What it does: A peer-to-peer loan company that was founded in 2006.

Valuation:$US3.8 billion.

Now that you've seen some great startup leaders, check out:

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