No. 5 James McNerney (CEO): 3M
James McNerney’s resignation from 3M and move to The Boeing Company stunned many in corporate America, particularly given that only a few months earlier he reported plans to stay with 3M. He was lured away in the wake of Boeing’s ex-CEO’s departure over the “mistress scandal.” Wall Street concurs that McNerney’s presence at 3M created a more powerful corporation. McNerney’s cost-cutting strategies and smart repositioning of the Fortune 500 consumer products giant are credited for the company’s best results ever. Previously, McNerney’s stellar reputation as a leading executive had made him a contender to succeed Jack Welch at General Electric.