I am not entirely sure where you get getting the idea that benevolent dictators have to be even remotely popular. Popularity is a function of how good a leader is at appealing to the populace, not of the importance of the interests of the state to the said dictator. South Korea's Park Chung-hee is a benevolent dictator par excellence, yet a very divisive figure even during his own time.
Furthermore, this does not work for corporations and they are not benevolent dictatorships, because CEOs are already elected by the board of directors, who are again elected by the shareholders. It is already a democratic process, except for the fact that the electorate are the shareholders rather than employees. The companies that are pursuing the whole "you own the company" culture are already giving employees suffrage by offering them stock options, thus making the employees also the shareholders and thus eligible to elect directors.