GRAND RAPIDS — Four West Michigan-based corporations rank among the top five most trustworthy public companies in the state, according to the findings of new research from Grand Valley State University.
Benton Harbor-based Whirlpool Corp., Kalamazoo-based Stryker Corp., Grand Rapids-based Steelcase Inc. and Battle Creek-based Kellogg Co. all finished in the top five in the ranking of trustworthiness.
The report, released by three professors at the Koeze Business Ethics Initiative at GVSU’s Seidman College of Business, looked at the 18 largest public companies in the state.
“We do not intend to imply that those companies that scored low in the rankings are untrustworthy; it simply means they did not score as high in comparison to the others we considered,” Michael DeWilde, director of the Koeze Business Ethics Initiative and professor of management, said in a statement. “By the same token, a higher score simply means these companies’ efforts to be trustworthy are paying some dividends.”
The researchers — DeWilde; Kevin Lehnert, an associate professor of marketing; Vijay Godhalekar, a professor of financing; and Arik Aninos, a graduate research assistant — analyzed companies’ performances in their treatment of stakeholders, branding and reputation, leadership and governance, ethics and values and financial strength.
According to the report, the researchers used outside rankings, commentary, websites and public data as sources for determining a company’s trustworthiness, including an analysis of wages and benefits, employee turnover and safety record.
Each company was ranked by a five-point scale.
GVSU’s ‘trustworthiness’ findings:
- Whirlpool Corp., Benton Harbor - 4.1
- Ford Motor Co., Dearborn - 3.9
- Stryker Corp., Kalamazoo - 3.6
- Steelcase Inc., Grand Rapids - 3.6
- Kellogg Co., Battle Creek - 3.4
- CMS Energy Corp., Jackson - 3.4
- DTE Energy, Detroit - 3.3
- General Motors, Detroit - 3.1
- Ally Financial Inc., Detroit - 3.0
- Universal Forest Products, Grand Rapids - 3.0
- Dow Chemical Co. (merged w/ DuPont 2017), Midland - 2.9
- Kelly Services Inc., Troy - 2.9
- Lear Corp., Southfield - 2.8
- Penske Corp., Bloomfield Hills - 2.5
- American Axle & Manufacturing, Detroit - 2.5
- Wolverine World Wide Inc., Rockford - 2.5
- SpartanNash Co., Grand Rapids - 2.4
- Visteon Corp., Van Buren Township - 1.3