Sales Leadership

America’s Most And Least Reputable Big Companies

Jacquelyn Smith, 04.05.11, 12:01 AM EDT  Forbes List

“Amazon is the most reputable company in the U.S. in 2011 because consumers believe that it stands for more than what it sells,” says Anthony Johndrow, managing partner at Reputation Institute. “Its enterprise-wide story engages consumers in more than just delivering innovative products and services, a trustworthy and ethical customer experience or strong financial performance. The whole really is greater than the sum of the parts with Amazon, and this holistic perception creates a meaningful connection between Amazon and consumers, resulting in an excellent reputation score.”

The industrial products firm 3M ( MMM news people ), another newcomer to the top 10, holds the No. 4 spot with a pulse score of 81. The St. Paul-based company is constantly innovating and acquiring businesses to stay ahead of the curve. A year of strong financial performance raised its profile and enhanced its reputation as a company.

“The people of 3M have always understood the compelling nature of character and integrity as the defining elements of our reputation,” George W. Buckley, 3M’s chief executive, told Reputation Institute. “This reputational foundation is the critical element in building the trust of our customers in 3M as we work towards their success, as well as our own. Technology and integrity are the combined glue that holds 3M together.”

In Pictures: America’s 10 Most Reputable Companies

In Pictures: America’s 10 Least Reputable Companies

After dropping out of the top 10 last year, FedEx ( FDX news people ) returns in the No. 7 spot, with a pulse score of 79.63. Why? With its legendary founder, Fred Smith, still pushing the envelope as he leads the way on vehicle energy efficiency standards, FedEx’s excellent reputation starts at the top. The logistics services company invests in telling its enterprise-wide story rather than focusing exclusively on products and services, and that allows consumers to applaud what it stands for, not just what it sells.

Last year’s winner, Johnson & Johnson ( JNJ news people ) (No. 3), has made the top 10 for the past six years. Food makers Kellogg‘s ( K news people ) (No. 5) and Sara Lee ( SLE news people ) (No. 8) and tech giant Google ( GOOG news people ) (No. 9) all dropped two spots from 2010–but stayed near the top nonetheless.

Overall, consumer products, industrial products, food manufacturing, computer and general retail companies scored highest. At the other end of the spectrum, telecommunications, energy and diversified financial companies earned the weakest scores.

“The next segment gives a reason to pause. Let’s consider the” why” before we look at “how” this can be turned around. Sometimes a glaring ” F” on the report card is the wake up call needed to inspire change. Both success and failure leaves clues. The companies at the top of the list are  not there by accident, neither are the ones at the bottom. Will you and your company position yourselves to be at the top  of your segment?

Number 34 , 35 and 62 are in very competitive segments and yet they maintain a ranking far superior to their peers between the 100 – 150 positions.”

Decide to Compete at YOUR highest level!, Dixon Judd, CEO of Performance Resource Group.

The least reputable company on the list this year: Freddie Mac ( FRE news people ). In dead last, the home mortgage financier earned a pulse score of 29.47. AIG ( AIG news people ) did only slightly better with 33.94 points, and Fannie Mae ( FNM news people ) proved the third least reputable company, with a score of 34.70. In the No. 4 spot, Goldman Sachs ( GS news people ) dropped 9.6 points to 37.14. But it’s not all bad for financials. A few in the sector saw significant reputation gains this year. US Bancorp ( USB news people ) and JPMorgan Chase ( JPM news people ) saw their scores increase by 4.79 and 4.11 points, respectively. Citigroup ( C news people ) (+9.11) and Morgan Stanley ( MS news people ) (+8.04) had some of the biggest jumps on the list.

2011 Rank Company Stock Ticker RepTrak Pulse 2011 RepTrak Pulse 2010 Change vs. 2010 Industry
1 Amazon.com AMZN 82.7 76.94 5.76 Retail – General
2 Kraft Foods KFT 81.4 84.84 -3.45 Food – Manufacturing
3 Johnson & Johnson JNJ 81.32 85.82 -4.49 Consumer Products
4 3M MMM 81 77.15 3.85 Industrial Products
5 Kellogg’s K 80.87 82.78 -1.91 Food – Manufacturing
6 UPS UPS 80.46 78.93 1.53 Transport & Logistics
7 FedEx FDX 79.63 77.59 2.04 Transport & Logistics
8 Sara Lee SLE 79.53 80.04 -0.51 Food – Manufacturing
9 Google GOOG 79.25 79.31 -0.06 Information & Media
10 Walt Disney Company DIS 79.02 82.11 -3.09 Information & Media
11 Texas Instruments TXN 78.46 75.79 2.68 Computer
12 Caterpillar CAT 77.95 78.07 -0.12 Industrial Products
13 Kohl’s KSS 77.91 71.43 6.48 Retail – General
14 Whirlpool WHR 77.51 76.81 0.69 Consumer Products
15 General Mills GIS 77.44 78.46 -1.03 Food – Manufacturing
16 HJ Heinz HNZ 77.29 77.46 -0.17 Food – Manufacturing
17 Berkshire Hathaway BRK.A 77.24 73.92 3.32 Financial – Diversified
18 Eastman Kodak EK 76.85 77.73 -0.88 Consumer Products
19 Staples SPLS 76.5 77.7 -1.2 Retail – General
20 Procter & Gamble PG 76.45 74.26 2.18 Consumer Products
21 Lowe’s Home Improvement LOW 76.35 76.64 -0.28 Retail – General
22 Intel INTC 76.34 76.88 -0.54 Computer
23 Target TGT 76.17 73.49 2.68 Retail – General
24 Home Depot HD 76.11 74.29 1.83 Retail – General
25 Coca-Cola KO 75.85 76.86 -1.01 Beverage
26 Macy’s M 75.69 70.43 5.27 Retail – General
27 JC Penney JCP 75.34 76.28 -0.94 Retail – General
28 PepsiCo PEP 75.09 81.2 -6.1 Beverage
29 Colgate-Palmolive CL 74.4 77.99 -3.59 Consumer Products
30 CVS Caremark CVS 74.31 71.44 2.87 Retail – General
31 Xerox XRX 74.31 75.99 -1.68 Industrial Products
32 Kimberly-Clark KMB 74.14 73.25 0.89 Consumer Products
33 Baxter International BAX 74.04 68.98 5.05 Services
34 Southwest Airlines LUV 74.02 73.38 0.64 Airlines & Aerospace
35 Marriott International MAR 74.02 76.29 -2.27 Services
36 Kroger KR 73.86 73.35 0.51 Retail – Food
37 Avon Products AVP 73.67 73.2 0.47 Consumer Products
38 Goodyear GT 73.62 74.24 -0.62 Automotive
39 Office Depot ODP 73.58 73.06 0.52 Retail – General
40 Hewlett-Packard HPQ 73.58 76.92 -3.34 Computer
41 Nike NKE 73.45 74.11 -0.66 Consumer Products
42 Cisco Systems CSCO 73.22 71.1 2.12 Computer
43 Costco Wholesale COST 73.21 72.98 0.23 Retail – General
44 IBM IBM 73.12 76.77 -3.65 Computer
45 BJ’s Wholesale Club BJ 73.04 73.63 -0.59 Retail – General
46 Apple AAPL 72.89 78.36 -5.47 Computer
47 Microsoft MSFT 72.73 79.28 -6.55 Computer
48 State Farm Insurance 72.7 65.1 7.6 Financial – Insurance
49 Oracle ORCL 72.66 70.04 2.61 Computer
50 Tyson Foods TSN 72.51 72.66 -0.15 Food – Manufacturing
51 Honeywell International HON 72.27 66.82 5.45 Industrial Products
52 Deere & Co. DE 72.2 73.58 -1.39 Industrial Products
53 Walgreens WAG 72.14 73.33 -1.19 Retail – General
54 Dean Foods DF 72.11 78.79 -6.68 Food – Manufacturing
55 Motorola MSI 71.74 75.5 -3.76 Electrical & Electronics
56 Alcoa AA 71.51 69.93 1.58 Raw Materials
57 Ford F 71.47 64.3 7.18 Automotive
58 Medtronic MDT 71.35 72.57 -1.22 Services
59 Hess HES 71.04 68.38 2.65 Energy
60 TJX Companies TJX 70.75 66.6 4.15 Retail – General
61 Southern Company SO 70.28 72.95 -2.67 Utilities
62 Prudential PRU 70.25 67.88 2.37 Financial – Insurance
63 Boeing BA 69.65 71.16 -1.51 Airlines & Aerospace
64 Time Warner TWX 69.44 54.46 14.98 Information & Media
65 General Electric GE 69.29 76.55 -7.26 Conglomerate
66 Bristol-Myers Squibb BMY 69.27 66.91 2.36 Pharmaceuticals
67 New York Life Insurance 69.23 63.72 5.51 Financial – Insurance
68 Safeway SWY 69.15 70.77 -1.62 Retail – Food
69 Nordstrom JWN 69.06 69.28 -0.22 Retail – General
70 Gap GPS 68.91 69.47 -0.57 Retail – General
71 Dell DELL 68.71 75.66 -6.95 Computer
72 DuPont DFT 68.37 70.61 -2.25 Chemicals
73 Supervalu SVU 68.04 63.24 4.8 Retail – Food
74 Chubb CB 68 69.39 -1.39 Financial – Insurance
75 Constellation Energy CEG 67.68 66.2 1.47 Utilities
76 Travelers TRV 67.51 67.31 0.2 Financial – Insurance
77 Eli Lilly LLY 67.44 68.28 -0.84 Pharmaceuticals
78 Best Buy BBY 67.43 72.58 -5.15 Retail – General
79 Hartford Financial Services HIG 67.42 65.17 2.26 Financial – Diversified
80 ConAgra Foods CAG 67.27 71.26 -4 Food – Manufacturing
81 eBay EBAY 67.16 71.19 -4.03 Retail – General
82 BB&T BBT 66.94 66.29 0.65 Financial – Bank
83 Pfizer PFE 66.69 69.67 -2.99 Pharmaceuticals
84 Amgen AMGN 66.65 70.48 -3.83 Pharmaceuticals
85 Abbott Laboratories ABT 66.58 71.82 -5.24 Pharmaceuticals
86 Liberty Mutual Insurance 66.26 63.57 2.69 Financial – Insurance
87 Progressive PGR 66.19 67.67 -1.48 Financial – Insurance
88 Sears Holdings SHLD 66.13 63.91 2.23 Retail – General
89 Allstate ALL 66.02 64.35 1.67 Financial – Insurance
90 Bank of New York Mellon BK 65.66 60.17 5.5 Financial – Bank
91 Nationwide NFS 65.56 66.84 -1.28 Financial – Insurance
92 Continental Airlines UAL 65.46 60.29 5.17 Airlines & Aerospace
93 Rite Aid RAD 65.31 76.04 -10.73 Retail – General
94 MetLife MET 65.25 65.15 0.1 Financial – Insurance
95 Starbucks Coffee SBUX 65.05 68.2 -3.15 Retail – Food
96 American Express AXP 64.93 62.12 2.81 Financial – Diversified
97 FPL Group (now NextEra Energy) FPL (now NEE) 64.89 64.73 0.16 Utilities
98 SunTrust Banks STI 64.85 68.1 -3.25 Financial – Bank
99 Reynolds American RAI 64.83 . . Tobacco
100 CBS Broadcasting CBS 64.82 68.25 -3.43 Information & Media
101 UAL – United Airlines UAL 64.76 59.95 4.81 Airlines & Aerospace
102 Delta Air Lines DAL 63.85 62.79 1.06 Airlines & Aerospace
103 Merck MRK 63.81 65.24 -1.43 Pharmaceuticals
104 Wal-Mart WMT 63.73 61.72 2.01 Retail – General
105 Aflac AFL 63.33 65.15 -1.82 Financial – Insurance
106 UnitedHealth UNH 63.3 56.06 7.23 Services
107 US Airways LCC 63.26 63.27 -0.01 Airlines & Aerospace
108 Verizon Communications VZ 63.08 65.93 -2.85 Telecommunications
109 Duke Energy DUK 63.06 . . Utilities
110 General Motors GM 62.95 52.26 10.69 Automotive
111 AMR – American Airlines AMR 62.91 63.9 -1 Airlines & Aerospace
112 Unum Group UNM 62.54 . . Financial – Insurance
113 Xcel Energy XEL 62.52 . . Utilities
114 WellPoint WLP 62.52 62.76 -0.24 Services
115 McDonald’s MCD 62.47 72.41 -9.93 Retail – Food
116 Viacom VIA 61.86 60.74 1.13 Information & Media
117 Aetna AET 61.75 66.09 -4.34 Services
118 Altria MO 61.64 57.41 4.24 Tobacco
119 Sunoco SUN 61.36 63.81 -2.45 Energy
120 Humana HUM 61.08 64.11 -3.03 Services
121 Dow Chemical DOW 61.05 63.88 -2.83 Chemicals
122 AutoNation AN 61.01 61.39 -0.38 Retail – General
123 Morgan Stanley MS 60.51 52.48 8.04 Financial – Diversified
124 Chevron CVX 60.43 58.03 2.39 Energy
125 US Bancorp USB 60.31 55.52 4.79 Financial – Bank
126 Sprint Nextel S 60.15 60.06 0.09 Telecommunications
127 JPMorgan Chase JPM 59.89 55.78 4.11 Financial – Diversified
128 ConocoPhillips COP 59.86 61 -1.14 Energy
129 Archer Daniels Midland ADM 59.77 64.53 -4.75 Food – Manufacturing
130 Exelon EXC 59.67 61.05 -1.39 Utilities
131 Marathon Oil MRO 59.61 64.63 -5.02 Energy
132 CIGNA CI 59.34 60.55 -1.21 Services
133 AT&T T 59.33 67.25 -7.92 Telecommunications
134 Assurant AIZ 59.1 . . Financial – Insurance
135 Valero Energy VLO 58.57 60.57 -2 Energy
136 DISH Network DISH 58.39 58.82 -0.43 Information & Media
137 Wells Fargo WFC 57.82 56.9 0.92 Financial – Bank
138 DirecTV DTV 57.63 55.36 2.26 Information & Media
139 Qwest Communications Q 56.14 . . Telecommunications
140 News Corporation NWSA 55.47 56.16 -0.69 Information & Media
141 Bank of America BAC 53.4 51.62 1.79 Financial – Bank
142 Comcast CMCSA 51.62 52.09 -0.48 Information & Media
143 Capital One Financial COF 50.52 52.72 -2.2 Financial – Diversified
144 Citigroup C 49.46 40.35 9.11 Financial – Diversified
145 ExxonMobil XOM 44.99 48.02 -3.03 Energy
146 Halliburton HAL 37.62 31.43 6.19 Construction & Engineering
147 Goldman Sachs GS 37.14 46.75 -9.6 Financial – Diversified
148 Fannie Mae (Federal National Mortgage Association ) FNMA 34.7 38.22 -3.52 Financial – Diversified
149 AIG – American International Group AIG 33.94 27.06 6.88 Financial – Insurance
150 Freddie Mac (Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation) FMCC 29.47 33.11