Top 10 Best and Worst Reputations In Corporate America

The results of the Harris Interactive survey that tracks the reputations of the 60 most visible companies in America has been released and here they are: Google is tops and Halliburton is not. Not shocking, but there are some interesting findings. Honda is the only car company to make the top 10, and Comcast, Sprint and Northwest Airlines are the least well-regarded in their respective industries.

The Top 10 Reputations

1) Google

2) Johnson & Johnson

3) Intel

4) General Mills

5) Kraft

6) Berkshire Hathaway

7) 3M

8) Coca-Cola

9) Honda

10) Microsoft

The 10 Worst Reputations

10) DaimlerChrysler

9) General Motors Corporation

8) ChevronTexaco Corporation

7) Ford

6) Sprint

5) Comcast

4) Exxon

3) Northwest Airlines

2) Citgo

1) Halliburton

Does this survey ring true to you? Do these companies deserve the reputation they have?

Another interesting bit of data from the survey:

The Top 5 Biggest Decreases In Reputation

1) Bank of America

2) Halliburton

3) Wal-Mart

4) Sears

5) Nike

Seventy-One Percent of Consumers Say the Reputation Of Corporate America Is “Poor” [Harris]


Edit Your Comment

  1. ffmariners says:

    I wish I could mine everyones data and still have everyone love me.

  2. 11hawkinst says:

    Hmm… I don’t know why Nike has lost some reputation. They’ve always seemed like an honest company to me (someone care to fill me in?). All the others on the decreases in reputation I can understand, but I don’t know about Nike.

    Overall, I’d say they got those reputations right.

  3. Phillip1952 says:

    I live in the Minneapolis area and for the last 10 years its been Northworst to me. Bad everything. To bad there only numeber 3 now the survey has given them something to work for.

  4. @11hawkinst: And everybody thought they were a shoe-in for the top honors…

  5. IrisMR says:

    Countdown to someone bashing Microsoft in three, two, one…

  6. This list makes a lot more sense than that “The 10 Most Reputable Companies In The U.S.” list last week.

    I’m still surprised that Google gets this ranking despite their “see no evil/hear no evil” approach to China.

  7. I’m actually pretty surprised that Apple isn’t on the top, but Microsoft is.

    (Disclaimer: use/love both)

  8. WiglyWorm must cease and decist says:

    Intel: proof positive that you don’t actually need to be a good company to have a good reputation.

    Look in to the current anti-trust suits worldwide against Intel and see what slime they really are.

  9. lalaland13 says:

    @IrisMR: And hey, Apple isn’t in the top 10. Scandal!

  10. sleze69 says:

    Halliburton isn’t an American Company anymore.

  11. ffmariners says:

    @sleze69: Yeah they are? They just opened up a second headquarters in Dubai. The main headquarters is still in Houston.

  12. @ffmariners: If you mine it while offering your users, oh I don’t know, 6 GB (and counting!) of email storage, a great interface, and a million useful features, then you too can mine data and keep your reputation.

    It’s not like Google’s products suck.

  13. Juggernaut says:

    I found a dead rat in my Google this morning… @IrisMR: and Microsoft wasn’t any help!

  14. @IamNotToddDavis: You mean you like the companies more? Because, as you know, “The 10 Most Reputable Companies In The U.S.” and the “Top 10 Reputations” are the same thing. They just used different methodology.

    As RetailGuy83 said in the last thread, these polls just measure who has the best PR department.

  15. JustaConsumer says:

    Microsoft is on the wrong list.

  16. ne1butu says:

    Honda sells some seriously ugly gas hogs lately. Their Accord has gotten so big and bloated that it’s now classified as a full-sized car. CRVs were catching fire in parking lots and their manual transmissions have been plagued with problems. They certainly shouldn’t rank at the bottom of the list, but they are by no means any more honorable than GM. I’m shocked that they have been able to pull the wool over consumers eyes for so long.

  17. nfs says:

    Yay for Google. Coca-cola?

    Surprised AMR (American Airlines) didn’t make the list. Also, Sprint is in there. Although, here’s an advice for Sprint, it’s not the fancy iFone-like devices or unlimited data plans that is important, It is coverage. I’ve had so many dropped calls, please fix that first.

  18. thaShady says:

    Look at the American car companies on that list, OUCH! Nike is probably decreasing because they use 10 year olds to manufacture their products.

  19. ffmariners says:

    @Michael Belisle: I agree the products they make are great. I am excited about Google Transit starting to incorporate more cities :D

    BUT… I am not a Google fanboy who thinks they are out to make the world a better place. They are mining our data and making money off of it (through search engine/ad optimization and what not)

  20. @Michael Belisle: Yeah, I kinda figured. This list just seems a lot more realistic than the other one.

  21. dragonfire1481 says:

    @nfs: Coverage is important, but Sprint’s major problem is the abysmal customer service. I would know, I used to work there.

  22. Bladefist says:

    @lalaland13: It’s a top 10 of the best/worst reputations in America. Not a top 10 in price gouging and highest margin of all time.

  23. battra92 says:

    Go Berkshire! I only say that because they used to be sort of a local company (that is actually in the Berkshire mountains of Massachusetts)

    I still think GM gets an undeserved bad rep. They make some great cars. The new Malibu is fantastic.

    Funny that Kraft is up there when they haven’t had a successful product launch in years plus the supposed boycott people were doing of them.

  24. battra92 says:

    @Bladefist: LOl so true. I love my Macbook and all but seriously put a dock on Ubuntu and a few tweaks later and you have essentially something that’s 90% as friendly as a Mac.

    See Lifehacker for details. ;)

  25. mikelotus says:

    This list is a pile of putrid garbage. Any list that has Intel and MS as “good” clearly is a list based on the common idiot on the street.

  26. I don’t get the Northwest taint. I lived in the Twin Cities for five years and traveled a lot for work, and considering their “fortress hub” status there I found them to be no worse than any other US airline and a damned sight better for overseas travel than UA/AA. plus they still have free booze across the ponds, though I doubt that’ll last much longer.

    face it, they all suck, though there’s a special pit of hell reserved for Delta/Comair who the few times I have flown them, or tried to, has been consistently late or the flights were cancelled for no reason. Now that they are merging with Delta and fading away, I burned all my NW miles on a trip to Paris last month and will start over somewhere else because I will not fly Delta under any circumstances. RIP, Northwest.

  27. krom says:

    Microsoft is in the top 10 because most people are stupid, ignorant, and don’t work in the technology industry (or work at Microsoft — full time that is).

    I don’t understand why people think Microsoft is so great. Perhaps they think Bill Gates is a wonderful human being who never exploited anyone and never underpaid for anything. Perhaps they think just because Microsoft Windows and Office are installed on every computer, or because those are all they’ve learned and all they are capable of using, therefore it must be an awesome company. Or maybe they all secretly hope to be as ruthless and deceitful and mind-numbingly rich as Bill Gates is.

  28. stickystyle says:

    Two things….
    Since when is Honda an American company?
    And since this survey is supposed to be of American consumers, how many American consumers could honestly tell you what Berkshire Hathaway DOES to form an opinion on it, I bet I could ask everyone in my office and fifty would have no idea, three would say “that warren buffet guy”, and one would know.

  29. Elijah-M says:

    @stickystyle: I’m not sure how a company qualifies as American, but Honda has 12 manufacturing plants in the US, so they do employ a large number of Americans.

  30. sean77 says:

    Why is Exxon and Chevron up there? Is it because people are blaming them for gas prices?

    Because I certainly can’t imagine people having a bad experience getting gas.. it’s one of the most convenient things out there.. open 24 hours, don’t even need to talk to anyone.

  31. Elijah-M says:

    Why ExxonMobile Doesn’t Care About Alternative Fuels: []
    ExxonMobil fights off call to invest in oil alternatives: []
    ExxonMobil Accused of Disinformation on Warming: []

  32. LucyInTheSky says:

    hee hee hee

    halliburton loses =D

  33. Michifernication says:

    Where’s Amazon?

  34. @ffmariners: The dream always starts pure: they are out to make the world a better place. They just realized they can monetize all that information while they’re at it.

  35. battra92 says:

    @mikelotus: Dude, so much hate.

    I was a devoted AMD user until I got my recent Core 2 Duo. Seriously, they are making some good products.

  36. jst07 says:

    Awesome to see GM, Daimler Chrysler, and Ford up there, makes me proud to be American…

  37. darkryd says:

    Hells yeah Sprint deserves their reputation.

    Their service (customer and coverage alike) is horrible and their current corporate environment is a circus of layoffs and in-fighting.

    -and that’s coming from someone who lives in Kansas City, where they’re based.

    No right-minded employee in KC these days takes a job at Sprint. Its too risky and miserable.

  38. Optimus says:

    @battra92: I agree that the “common idiot” remark was a bit harsh, but I think the idea is warranted. Those who are uneducated about Intel and Microshaft tend to give them much more positive reputations than those who have researched them. I don’t know of many people besides monopolists that will be willing to give positive marks on reputation to a monopolist.

    The problem with Intel is that they were still on this list when they weren’t making good products because they forced PC vendors into contracts that required exclusion of AMD specifically. Granted that’s not a reason for them to be off the good list now.

    The problem with Microshaft is that it’s been over 6 years since they sold a product that improved on the previous product… and they are still on the good list… even after threatening to sue customers of their competitors for patent infringement for which they appear to lack proof.

  39. Greasy Thumb Guzik says:

    I still don’t know why anyone thinks that Kraft has a good rep?
    It’s not going to be around much longer, it’s run by idiots & all of us know we’ll be out of a job when the company’s brands are sold off, bit by bit.

    Here’s one current idiocy, somewhat inside, but illustrative: The Bannockburn office is being closed & all the employees there are being moved way down Waukegan Rd. to Glenview. To make room for them, several hundred people will be moved from Glenview, north on Waukegan Rd. to Northfield. Why not just move the Bannockburn employees to Northfield?
    This is Irene’s idea of saving money, a double move!
    Obviously what makes sense to us makes no sense to her.
    All of Kraft’s offices in the Chicago suburbs are on Waukegan Rd.
    Northfield even has a cemetery on the campus, right next to the building. It’s the bodies of the Russell family that once farmed the land.

  40. battra92 says:

    @sean77: More or less.

    I actually prefer to go to Cumberland Farms (Gulf) or Sunoco since they are usually cheaper and right on my way. Always good service at those and supposedly Sunoco is more enviro-friendly than Exxon.

  41. battra92 says:

    @Optimus: Oh I still hate Microsoft and I use Ubuntu on my home desktop and have a MacBook.

    AMD always made solid processors as did Intel. I always built my own PCs so it was more I bought AMD as they used to be cheaper.

    AMD also never advertised so people tended to opt for the Intel PCs and only get the AMD when they were cheaper as such AMD got a “bargain brand” processor name.

  42. stager says:

    Whys Nike on the decline list?

  43. Bladefist says:

    @Optimus: As a windows user, Microsoft definitely screwed up with Vista, and is not admitting that, and making life harder.

    As a developer, Microsoft is absolutely amazing. The tools they provider at the price (often free) they provide them allows for many people to make a living writing programs for windows.

  44. MaliBoo Radley says:


    Their use of underage workers?


  45. Optimus says:

    @Bladefist: I agree. They do make some surprisingly good programming tools. I hadn’t thought about that because I haven’t used them since VS 6, but I’ve seen them in use recently and they are very good.

    I think the only reason they’re nearly or completely free now is because of the competition and people like me who have managed to almost totally avoid paying for programming tools for years because of the GPL and GNU.

    Unfortunately for Microshaft:
    Once you’ve gone GPL…
    You shun lock-in Hell.

  46. ngoandy says:

    I don’t understand why Northwest is on the list. I like them. I’ve never had any problems.

    How is Johnson & Johnson always doing good? I’d rate them as neutral, similar to 3M.

  47. hwyengr says:

    @Bladefist: What in the hell are you talking about? Price gouging is just your precious free-market in action, baby! High profit margins? Again, capitalism! How can someone as republican as you slight a company for making money? Because their stereotypical consumer base has an opposite ideology from you? You have a lot more in common with Apple than you give credit for.

  48. Sears sucks, it is true, but, alas, i dont see the positivity as #2 being J&J
    on another note, i wish you could see posted comments after yours on here

  49. BytheSea says:

    Johnson & Johnson is only trusted because they’re the first shampoo you remember using, and they’re what parents rely on to make their kids healthy and nonstinky. I temped in their office, they are just as evil as any other drug company.

  50. BytheSea says:

    Hmm… I don’t know why Nike has lost some reputation. They’ve always seemed like an honest company to me (someone care to fill me in?).

    Sweatshops, I guess.

  51. nudger says:

    If you look at the individual companies that comprise Berkshire Hathaway, it’s hard to explain ranking the holding company anywhere near the top:


    There must be a lot of carryover from the personal reputation of Warren Buffett in the Harris survey.

  52. Meathamper says:

    Microsoft? Are you kidding me? But yeah, it’s a lot better than Halliburton.

  53. If NWA didn’t have their streak of cancellations last summer, they’d not be on this list, and US Airways or United would take their rightful place there instead.

  54. shmianco says:

    hmm, Kraft makes terrible food. poisoning our bodies and minds. so does Coke. in fact, they’re some of the worst perpetrators i can think of…so why the HECK are they on the admired list?? people need to wake up.

  55. complexsearch says:

    Why is Microsoft there, I thought everybody hated Bill Gates and the blue screen of death?

  56. Ssscorpion says:

    I bet if you stopped 100 Americans at random and asked them, “What exactly does Halliburton do?” maybe one of the 100 could give you an intelligent answer to the question.

    Halliburton finished #1 because the press hates Cheney and so they have heaped non-stop bad press on the company for eight years.

  57. LJKelley says:

    The list is a bit off on the sole fact that DiamlerChrysler doesn’t exist any longer.

    Also I’m shocked but pleased to see Microsoft in the top 10. Though, i’m appearently one of the odd ones that enjoy Vista.

  58. garbagehead says:

    Google is @IamNotToddDavis: i hear ya. I live in China right now and i can’t use anonymouse proxy anymore, all subjects concerning Tibet are off limits. Google is evil. They turned their back on everyone in China except for the people at the top.
    Although, it’s not like any of the chinese use Google anyways, they use Bai Du.

  59. mikes63737 says:

    AT&T should be on one of those two worst lists…..

  60. ShadowFalls says:

    @11hawkinst: @thaShady: @stager: @BytheSea:

    Nike, mostly because of the whole thing with Michael Vick and the contract deal they had with them.

    The American public acts like children often, blaming companies for things that they could have never known about because a person does something cruel and stupid.

  61. jakkyl says:

    What worst reputation companies list would be complete without mentnioning DHL / Excel Logistics.

  62. JZDK8B says:

    I would like to see a quick round like monthly
    This month we are judging BANKS
    This month we are judging shippers
    This month we are judging cable companies

  63. mikes63737 says:

    @jakkyl: DHL *always* delivers packages to the wrong house! It’s clearly marked with my address and they always bring it to my neighbor. Thank god my neighbors are honest people!

  64. BlazerUnit says:

    @stickystyle: Honda of America is an American company. A subsidiary of Honda (corporate) of Japan, but still, an American company.

  65. BlazerUnit says:

    @BlazerUnit: Slight correction: The company’s name is actually American Honda Motor Company, INC.

  66. Berkshire Hathaway? Does anyone who doesn’t read the Wall Street Journal even knows what that company does? About Microsoft being on the list, I suppose the Zune lifted its credibility, or something.

  67. mr mike says:

    Why did Citgo make the list?

  68. toiletduck says:

    Google is on the wrong list.

  69. Larry Underwood says:

    When the article was written, over nine months ago, nearly three quarters of consumers thought Corporate America had a “poor” reputation. And that was back in the good old days, before everyone went broke in the stock market and real estate market!

    With the current economic plight, as corporations are struggling to survive, laying off employees in record numbers; it’s very clear that Corporate America has failed miserably, in creating the “culture of success” necessary to thrive. Instead, they’ve created a culture of fear, micro-management, finger pointing, and backstabbing.

    I had first hand experience in dealing with the negative aspects of Corporate America, as one of Enterprise Rent-a-Car’s most successful executives (1974-2000), but was forced into an early retirement, probably because I was making close to $4 million by then.

    That experience inspired my book, “Life Under the Corporate Microscope”, published at the end of 2008, but seems even more relevent and compelling, today.