American corporations put too little effort into protecting American jobs, giving back to the communities in which they operate, and protecting the environment, according to a majority of the 6,500 Americans surveyed in the latest the RoperNOP Corporate Reputation Scorecard. Respondents also said companies fell short when it comes to disclosing important financial information.
The ill-feeling about business appears to go deeper than concern about the business scandals of the past two years.
“The current crisis in corporate reputation may not only reflect the impact of ongoing accounting scandals, but the view that big businesses aren’t meeting the needs of the larger community,” said John Gilfeather, vice chairman of RoperASW and director of the corporate reputation scorecard. “Americans expect more from corporate America than they are getting.”
The Scorecard also asked Americans to describe U.S. corporations using eight personality traits (strong, greedy, arrogant, deceitful, friendly, trustworthy, dull or fun). More than half of adults feel most large U.S. corporations are “greedy” (63 percent) and “arrogant” (52 percent) while less than a third say they are “trustworthy” (27 percent) and “fun” (13 percent).
The Scorecard also uncovered a disparity among industries with automotive and technology seen as the most “trustworthy” (44 percent and 39 percent respectively) and financial services facing the greatest challenge with only 26 percent using this trait to describe the industry.
“The results indicate a continued distrust in American corporations suggesting that today’s business leaders must take steps to tame the hostile environment,” said Gilfeather.