The Companies That Inspire Business Majors

Ohio State’s Ali Graham

Apple: “The human experience is rooted in connection, and Apple has single-handedly changed the way in which people connect. The sheer level of innovation that resulted in the introduction of the iPhone propelled society’s ability to communicate, express emotion, and share the human experience with the world. Because of its innovation within business and technology – and the way it has impacted the way we go about our daily lives – Apple is the company I admire most.”
Alexandria Graham, Ohio State (Fisher)

Away: “One of the companies on my radar lately has been Away, a luggage and travel brand disrupting a more-or-less stagnant industry and giving it a whole new meaning. Started and managed almost exclusively by women (yes ladies!), Away has championed their marketing with an incredible Instagram, a partnership with Dwayne Wade, and truly creating a lifestyle around their brand. They have even created some awesome content marketing for their customers and other interested parties, including Here magazine and the podcast Airplane Mode highlighting the reasons people travel and the places they can go. I’m a big fan and got an Away suitcase for Christmas, which I am excited to use next year when I start traveling for work!”
Lolly Buenaventura, Washington University (Olin)

AXIOS: “I admire AXIOS, a media news company. I love AXIOS because it emphasizes being unbiased and delivers news quickly. Being from small-town America and then going to school in urban America, I see that it is easy for people to only hear opinions that reinforce their own beliefs. However, AXIOS is objective and helps its readers think about the day’s important stories from multiple angles and, in that way, become smarter, more critical thinkers. It is combatting the rising tide of echo chambers.”
Dipak Kumar, University of Pennsylvania (Wharton School)

BaYou With Love: “Right now, the company that comes top of my mind is BaYou with Love. It’s a jewelry brand founded and created by the actress Nikki Reed. The company partners with Dell to create sustainable and fashionable jewelry collections made out of used technology recovered from Dell’s US recycling programs. I admire this company for striving so creatively towards zero waste through the elimination of e-waste. It’s not only inspiring but also heart-warming to know that there are great companies and individuals aspiring for a better change in the world.”
Leslie Parra, Babson College (Olin)

Erica Hackett, University of Illinois

Berkshire Hathaway: “I respect Berkshire Hathaway for its dedication to innovation, people management, and social responsibility. Furthermore, with Warren Buffett as the CEO, I admire the tone that he sets as the leader of the company. Berkshire Hathaway is one of the most trusted brands in the world, holding a collection of businesses in core industries. Furthermore, after meeting Mr. Buffett and visiting a few of his holding companies in Omaha, I firmly believe in the company’s operating principles and its ability to grow in the future.”
Jenna Florendo, Fordham University (Gabelli)

Boeing Company: “It is because it is a firm that has been a pioneer in aerospace engineering, but it goes beyond just its product. Boeing is firm in its values and commitment to safety, and it treats employees with respect. The Boeing mission is to “connect, protect, explore and inspire through aerospace and technology innovation.” During my two summers at Boeing, I really saw that mission embodied every day as I got to tour factories, learn from experienced co-workers, and do meaningful work. It is an iconic American firm, the largest exporter in the US, and I will always admire it for its innovation and values.”
Erica Hackett, University of Illinois (Gies)

Bridgewater Associates: “I admire Bridgewater Associates for creating a culture free of the bureaucratic red tape that often hinders creative thinking. Bridgewater strives to operate as an idea meritocracy in which work and relationships are pursued through radical truth and transparency. This freedom allows an intern’s idea to be judged by the same standards as that of the CEO. The best idea wins out, period. This openness allows employees to air disagreements, test ideas, find mistakes, and ultimately find the best solutions available.”
Max Wasserman, Ohio State (Fisher)

“Founded in 1975 and led by Ray Dalio, Bridgewater Associates is famous for their extreme performance and “radically transparent” culture. Everything is out in the open, which eliminates secrecy, lying, poor motivation, and leaves strong performance as the only factor to succeed. The firm has an immensely impressive reputation and I think the company’s structure and culture are fascinating.”
Paul Chamesian, Rutgers Business School (New Brunswick)

Rutgers University’s Raynier Matias

Chick-fil-A: “From customer service to technological innovation, Chick-fil-A has done a spectacular job carving out their corner of the market in the Fast-Casual Restaurant industry. While serving food is the centerpiece of Chick-fil-A’s business model, they have a huge presence within each community they have a location. I have participated in many fundraisers selling Chick-fil-A Calendars, caught up with friends over a chicken sandwich, and served my community through some of Chick-fil-A’s charitable organizations. It is their well-rounded business model and corporate culture that makes Chick-fil-A worthy of admiration not only within the restaurant industry but within the corporate world as a whole.”
Kaylee Ewing, University of Georgia (Terry)

Deloitte: “Not only is the firm a competitive multinational corporation, but it is also committed to investing in their employees. I admire the company because of this unique commitment and the opportunities it offers employees. Through training facilities and with help covering the costs of extracurricular work-related programs, employees are given an ability to continuously learn and develop their skills. The fact that so many people spend their entire career at Deloitte is a testament to the company’s treatment of its employees.”
Raynier Matias, Rutgers Business School (Newark)

Delta Air Lines: “Being from the Atlanta area, I admire Delta Air Lines for its dedication to its customers and employees (and their families) as well as its focus on social responsibility. As the daughter of a Delta employee, I have experienced first-hand that this company truly cares for its people, specifically with generous profit-sharing and travel benefits that have immensely impacted my opportunities and world view. However, I respect Delta most for its commitment to the community. Aside from being a leading airline with an emphasis on operational excellence, Delta has made a significant impact on the communities that it serves. From paying federal employees to keep the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial open on MLK Day during the government shutdown to help countries recover from natural disasters to donating $50 million per year to important causes to the CEO personally raising $1.8 million for childhood cancer research within a week, Delta truly demonstrates its dedication to the community.”
Niko Stjepan Martinovic, University of Notre Dame (Mendoza)

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