If there’s one thing that jumps out from Nielsen/Harris Poll’s latest report on the most reputable companies in the US, it is that foreignness counts.
Many foreign firms have high brand recognition and loyalty in the US, not to say substantial manufacturing interests.
Not a single European entity and only Honda, Samsung, Sony and Toyota from Asia are found to have an excellent, or very good corporate reputation in the country.
Stoking fears about foreign powers has long been a political fallback tool beloved of US politicians, and is, to a degree, embedded in the American psyche.
But it is equally true that foreign companies have to ensure they are seen to have high-quality products and are benefitting local communities if they are to gain real traction in the US.
The world is less flat than many of us care to imagine.
It is the time of the year when corporate reputations are paraded afresh. First out of the blocks: the annual list of The World’s Most Reputable Companies from the Reputation Institute.
The 2014 list contains some interesting findings from an Asian perspective:
- Three Asian firms make the top 10: Sony, Canon and Samsung
- Only 20 Asian firms make the grade, all but five (Samsung, LG Electronics, Singapore Airlines, Acer, Lenovo) of which are Japanese
- Lenovo is the only Chinese firm to be listed.
The fact that Japanese companies are still regarded as the most reputable in Asia comes as little surprise (despite Sony’s financial difficulties), and Samsung’s rise to the top ranks is probably only to be expected.
The list also underscores the huge reputational challenges facing Chinese companies as they go global – an issue I have written about previously.
The RI list is also interesting for what’s not there:
- No energy firms
- No banks
- No Indian firms.
Here’s the list in full: