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Archive for Sunday, July 15, 2001

Briefcase

July 15, 2001

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Management: Wal-Mart's top job leads list of most-desired positions

More rank-and-file managers would prefer to run Wal-Mart Stores Inc. than any other company in America, a new survey shows.

Of the 500 business professionals polled by Brouillard Communications, 20 percent said they'd want to serve as head honcho of the Bentonville, Ark.-based discount retailer.

Wal-Mart's appeal stems from its apparent immunity to recession, as well as its longevity and reputation as a good corporate citizen, said Bill Lyddan, president of Brouillard, a subsidiary of British advertising colossus WPP Group.

"It steadfastly projects bedrock values and wholesomeness," he said.

Following Wal-Mart, 15 percent would want the top job at Microsoft Corp.; 12 percent would like to run Coca-Cola Co.; and 11 percent would take the helm at AOL Time Warner Inc.

And which CEO jobs would go begging? Respondents named oil giant Exxon Mobil Corp. (26 percent) and tobacco colossus Philip Morris Cos. (23 percent) as the top two companies they'd prefer not to run.

Taste test: Doughnut duel ends in draw

As the number of Krispy Kreme shops mushrooms across the nation, so have the debates about whether the Winston-Salem, N.C.-based upstart's products are superior to those of Dunkin' Donuts.

To settle the score once and for all, Consumer Reports enlisted a team of taste testers. But the outcome was bittersweet.

The panel compared both chains' two top sellers: yeast-raised glazed doughnuts and glazed chocolate cake doughnuts.

Next month's issue of the magazine reveals that Krispy Kreme shellacked Dunkin' Donuts in the glazed doughnut competition.

But the judges deemed Randolph, Mass.-based Dunkin' Donuts' glazed chocolate concoction to be superior.

While doughnuts are hardly vaunted for their nutritional value, the magazine said, both Krispy Kreme varieties were made with more dietary don'ts than those at Dunkin' Donuts.

Motley Fool: Name that company

I was founded 100 years ago by a King. Within 25 years, he noted that he'd seen my flagship product in use all over the world, from Scandinavia to the Sahara. Today my products are divided into four divisions: grooming, portable power, oral care and household appliances. Three of these divisions account for 80 percent of my sales and 90 percent of my profits. Some of my brands include Mach3, Satin Care, Duracell, Braun and Oral-B. I recently sold my stationery products business to Newell Rubbermaid. I'm based in Boston, and my ticker symbol sounds like an exclamation. Who am I?

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