To most people, a watch is a functional object—a device used to tell time. For some, it’s is a sentimental item passed down from generation to generation. And for others, it’s fashion statement—the perfect accessory to pair with a suit and tie. But for the leaders in the business world, a watch is even more than a symbol of status and power—it’s a rite of passage.
What better way to let your peers know you’ve made it, without saying anything at all? Sure the title, and presumably the paycheck, are proof enough, but why not showcase your hard work right on your wrist? That’s exactly what some of today’s top CEOs have done.
Mark Hurd, Co-CEO of Oracle
After co-founder Larry Ellison stepped down in 2014, Hurd joined Safra Catz as Co-CEO of Oracle. Despite the recent boom of smart watches flooding the market, this software company veteran prefers a more timeless look for his wrist. You can find him wearing a classic Rolex Datejust with a jubilee bracelet.
Jeffrey Immelt, Former CEO of General Electric
Immelt epitomizes brand loyalty. He’d been with General Electric since he graduated from Harvard with his MBA in 1982. It took this fierce business man years to work his way up through the ranks to CEO status. Now, his wrist showcases his loyalty to another brand: Breitling. It’s safe to say he’s earned the right to sport the Chronospace wherever his work takes him.
Steve Kaufer, Co-Founder and CEO of TripAdvisor
Like most anyone who’s arranged all the moving parts of a big trip, Kaufer saw a need for a single destination to guide you through travel planning. His own experiences and frustrations led him to co-found TripAdvisor in 2000. It’s safe to assume he’s an avid traveler and needs a loyal companion to accompany him wherever he goes. Thankfully, he’s got an Omega Deville Prestige to do just that.
Satya Nadella, CEO of Microsoft
In 2014, Nadella became only the third CEO in Microsoft’s history, following Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer. You certainly won’t find this tech industry veteran reaching for his competitor’s Apple watch—it seems that smartwatches aren’t his taste altogether. Instead, you can find him wearing a Breitling Colt Automatic on his wrist.
Randall Stephenson, CEO of AT&T
Stephenson has been AT&T’s CEO since 2007. Although he’s worked at a number of telecommunications firms over the years, Stephenson knows a thing or two about loyalty. When he’s not at the office, he’s serving on the Executive Board of the Boy Scouts of America as the National President. Whether on the job or at a board meeting, he’ll be wearing his TAG Heuer Kirium.
Michael Corbat, CEO of Citigroup
Since 2012, Corbat has served as Citigroup’s CEO, but he’s been with the company since he graduated from Harvard in 1983. With a degree in economics and a career in banking, Corbat certainly knows the value of a good investment. That’s why it comes as no surprise that a Jaeger-LeCoutlre Master Perpetual Calendar is his watch of choice.
John Watson, CEO of Chevron
Watson is another CEO who’s invested his entire career in one company. He joined Chevron after completing his MBA in 1980. Starting at the bottom and working his way up to the top, Watson has put in the manpower to earn the timepiece on his wrist. With his hard earned dollars, he’s invested in a Breitling Aerospace.
Jeff Bezos, Founder and CEO of Amazon
In 1994, Bezos left his job at a New York City hedge fund to found Amazon. He believed the Internet had potential most others couldn’t fathom, and he knew he wanted to get in on the ground floor of something big. What started as an alternative to brick and mortar bookstores has now grown into an empire. Such a visionary mastermind deserves a masterful watch; in this case, a Ulysse Nardin Dual Time.
Editor’s Note: This article was originally published on October 19, 2015. We have updated it with more recent information.