From the plastic covers of cell phones to cruise ship engines to kitchen appliances, General Electric Company provides millions of Americans with many of their everyday items. What began with Thomas Edison's momentous invention of the light bulb in 1876 has now exploded into a 300,000 employee company with $131 billion worth of annual revenue. As the oldest company listed in the Dow Jones Industrial Index, General Electric consistently ranks among the highest ranks of Fortune 100 companies and has recently been chosen as "World's Most Respected Company" in a survey of 903 global CEOs conducted by Financial Times
. Despite a wave of corporate distrust after Enron and Tyco, as well as the terrorist attacks of 9/11, CEO and Chairman, Jeffrey R. Immelt appears to be successfully adapting GE to the changing business environment.
Immelt has maintained the corporation's position as one of America's most admired companies by focusing not only on profits, but company culture. The 11 separate companies within General Electric all follow the corporation's commitment to creating a friendly and pleasant workplace environment. The corporation frequently wins awards for its efforts, including making it onto the list of "100 Best Companies for Working Mothers" by Working Mothers
magazine. Minorities also find a hospitable atmosphere at General Electric. The company has created support networks for African Americans, Hispanics, and Asian-Pacific professionals in order to help facilitate their careers. While the offices are understandably infused with corporate and bureaucratic structure, employees find that the structure provides a stable and considerate workplace environment.
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