Goldman Sachs has the worst reputation of a large American company. New York supermarket chain Wegmans is the most popular company. Samsung has also surpassed Apple as the most trusted technology company this year, and Amazon.com has risen to second place after first in the past two years.
The Harris Poll reputation score measures public opinion of the country’s best-known companies.
The public image of a company generally reflects that of its industry. “Industries certainly have a reputation of their own,” said Anisha Pearce, Nielsen vice president of reputation management and public affairs advisory. Pearce added that the public image of an industry can have a positive or negative impact on a company’s reputation.
This is probably one of the reasons why many of the least reputable companies are in the financial services industry, including Bank of America, AIG, and Goldman Sachs. The financial sector was rated 35 out of 100. Any score of less than 50 is considered a “severe” reputation.
At the other end of the spectrum, tech companies are by far the most powerful sector in this study. On average, companies in this sector received a total of 77 points, which was rated “very good”. In comparison, the next top sector, travel, and MyWegmansConnect tourism scored 62 points.
One of the reasons why tech companies work so well when oil, financial services, and healthcare companies do not may be related to how we use their products. The MyWegmansConnect products and services of these companies generally make their lives easier, more entertaining, essential to our productivity, and create positive experiences for consumers in many ways, Pearce said. On the other hand, public, energy, and financial companies offer relatively secular products and services.
While industry reputation is a factor, a company’s reputation can still be attributed to its practices. Companies with a terrible reputation like Koch Industries, Monsanto, and Dish Network are widely hated for behaviors that many consider reprehensible. Whether it’s serious environmental violations, perceived corruption, or even miserable customer service, these companies have earned their bad reputations.