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In the News

Is Working At An ‘Admired Company’ All It’s Cracked Up To Be?

Posted by Glassdoor Team

Career Advice Experts

March 8, 2011

Fortune has released its annual list of most admired companies. What is a ‘most admired” company you ask? Fortune describes them as those companies that have the best reputations. So of course we had to ask: Best reputation according to whom?

We put Fortune’s annual list of most admired companies to the test and turned to their employee’s company reviews and ratings on Glassdoor to see how they stack up.



- Five most admired companies: Apple, Google, Berkshire Hathaway, Southwest Airlines and Proctor & Gamble (according to Fortune)

- Highest rated 'admired' companies according to employees: Southwest Airlines (4.4, very satisfied), General Mills (4.2, satisfied), Google (3.9, satisfied), Procter & Gamble (3.9. satisfied) and Apple (3.8, satisfied); (according to employees)

- Lowest rated 'admired' companies according to employeesSamsung Electronics (2.1, dissatisfied), eBay (2.9 OK), Wal-Mart Stores (2.9, OK), Yum Brands (3.0, OK) and IBM (3.0, OK) – keep in mind that company ratings are based on a 5-point scale. (according to employees)

- Highest rated CEOs at 'admired companies' according to employees: General Mills Ken Powell (99% approval), Goldman Sachs’ Lloyd Blankfein (97% approval), Apple’s Steve Jobs (97% approval), Southwest Airlines’ Gary Kelly (96% approval), and Google’s Eric Schmidt (96% approval). (Based on CEOs with at least 20 ratings or more)

- Lowest rated CEOs at 'admired companies' according to employees: Wal-Mart’s Michael Duke (45% approval), Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer (48% approval), 3M’s George Buckley (50% approval),  IBM’s Samuel Palmisano (56% approval) and Johnson & Johnson’s Bill Weldon (59% approval). (Based on CEOs with at least 20 ratings or more)

Several companies fell in their Fortune rankings this year including:, Wal-Mart and Johnson & Johnson. We look to employees at these companies to shed light on what’s happening, the pros and the cons, within the office and building walls.

“There is a great team atmosphere at, starting with upper management and trickling down to area managers to their teams.” – employee (location n/a)

“Executives set ridiculous stretch goals and burn people out trying to achieve them. They have an endless appetite but don't always fund their mandates.” – Senior Program Manager (Seattle, WA)


“Some of the best reason to work at Walmart for me is that I have a great team I work with daily that helps me assist and take care of our valuable customers. I also like the good pay rate for my area and the 10% discount isn't bad either.” – Wal-Mart Sales Associate (Louisburg, NC)

“The culture is fading with the growing size”- Wal-Mart Business Analyst (location n/a)

Johnson & Johnson

“Working for J&J gives you instant recognition in the field, even if your job is the same as before, say at Tier 3 company.” – Johnson & Johnson Category Development Manager (Ontario, Canada)

“The company makes liberal use of contractor and temp employees, but no real effort is made to increase permanent employee headcount.” – Johnson & Johnson Staff Engineer (Warsaw, IN)

See the complete list below for most admired companies and how they rank according to employees:

Do you think these companies should be admired? Or if you work at one of these companies, share a company review on Glassdoor and tell us what you think about your job and the company.

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