Special Report

Companies With the Best and Worst Reputations

Companies with the worst reputation

Source: SweetBabeeJay / iStock

10. Comcast
> 2019 reputation quotient: 61.4
> 2018 reputation quotient: 67.1
> Industry: Telecommunications
> CEO: Brian L. Roberts

Cable television company Comcast has one of the worst reputations of any company in America. Consumers gave the Philadelphia, Pennsylvania-based company just 60 out of 100 on the American Customer Satisfaction Index for its internet service, 58 out of 100 for its subscription television service, and 65 out of 100 for its fixed-line telephone service. These scores were all lower than the cable industry average.

The company has been the subject of several lawsuits in recent years for deceptive pricing practices. Washington state sued the cable giant for $100 million in 2016. The company settled with the state of Massachusetts for $950,000 in November 2018. Currently, the company is facing a lawsuit filed by the Minnesota Attorney General.

Source: 4kclips / Shutterstock.com

9. Bank of America
> 2019 reputation quotient: 60.9
> 2018 reputation quotient: 64.9
> Industry: Financial services
> CEO: Brian Moynihan

Like many money-center banks, Bank of America’s reputation suffered following the financial crisis. Banks in general have had to deal with a blow to their reputation because customers did not believe the financial institutions were looking after their best interest.

A recent survey by the publication American Banker showed that Bank of America had the second worst reputation among consumers of any bank in its survey, trailing only Wells Fargo, another company on this list. Bank of America, based in Charlotte, North Carolina, didn’t endear itself to the bank patrons in 2012 after public outrage compelled the bank to drop a plan to impose a $5 fee for using debit cards to make purchases.

Source: Creative Commons / Wikimedia Commons

8. Goldman Sachs
> 2019 reputation quotient: 60.0
> 2018 reputation quotient: 61.4
> Industry: Financial services
> CEO: David Solomon

The reputation of investment bank Goldman Sachs was severely damaged a decade ago because of less-than-transparent lending and investment practices during the subprime financial crisis. The bank had been slowly rebuilding its reputation until political candidates during the 2016 presidential campaign made disparaging comments about the bank.

Though Goldman Sachs’s image has improved considerably in recent years — partially due to the 2018 departure of Lloyd Blankfein as CEO, a position he held during the financial crisis — the company still has some work to do to improve its reputation. This week, it was reported that Goldman Sachs’ U.K. unit must pay a fine of $45 million for failing to provide accurate information pertaining to 220 million transactions between 2007 and 2017.

Source: coffeekai / iStock

7. Facebook
> 2019 reputation quotient: 58.1
> 2018 reputation quotient: 74.1
> Industry: Social media
> CEO: Mark Zuckerberg

Facebook dealt with a series of scandals involving privacy concerns, hate speech, and fake news, all of which conspired to erode the trust of its customers as well as its reputation. CEO Mark Zuckerberg spent much of last year trying to repair the damage.

The scandals also hurt Facebook’s stock and the personal worth of Zuckerberg. Facebook shares plunged over 40% to a 2018 low of $124.06 in late-December. As for Zuckerberg, after his personal wealth soared to around $86 billion in 2018, it fell to around $53 billion.

Source: PhonlamaiPhoto / Getty Images

6. Dish Network
> 2019 reputation quotient: 56.9
> 2018 reputation quotient: 63.0
> Industry: Telecommunications
> CEO: W. Erik Carlson

Cable television providers like Dish Network usually appear on lists of companies with bad reputations because of customer-service issues. Customers have been voting with their feet and been cutting the cable cord because of what they believe are monthly costs that are too high, and they have been switching to alternative viewing options like streaming services such as Sling. Employees at Dish are not thrilled with the company either. At the employer-review site Glassdoor, only 37% of Dish workers would recommend the Englewood, Colorado-based company to a friend.

In attempt to remedy its poor reputation, Dish rolled out a customer listening campaign in 2017 that featured a so-called “spokeslistener” in a television ad. The company also created a feature on its website for customers to leave comments and complaints. Whether these features improve the company’s customer service or help its reputation remains to be seen. In the Harris reputation poll, it is the lowest ranking cable television provider.

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