Axios Charlotte

Picture of the Charlotte skyline with CLT written across it.
May 29, 2022

Hello, Sunday. It's Michael.

  • Weather: Sunny and 87°.

🎂 Happy birthday to Axios Charlotte members Valerie Beck, Dustin Howie, Meagan Soffera, Crystal Sundaramoorthy, Robin Williams and Yolanda Williamson.

🇺🇸 Situational awareness: We won't have a newsletter tomorrow in observance of Memorial Day. While you're patting out those burgers, take a few moments and think of those who've died in service.

Today's newsletter is 611 words — a 2-minute read.

1 big thing: 📉 Reputation is everything

Data: Harris Poll; Chart: Axios Visuals
Data: Harris Poll; Chart: Axios Visuals

Lowe's has the best reputation among the Charlotte area's largest companies, according to this year's Axios/Harris Poll 100.

  • But the Mooresville-based home improvement giant saw its overall ranking drop from 22nd among the country's top companies last year to 34th this year.

Why it matters: The reputation of Charlotte-based companies slumped some, and we're well behind our Southern rivals in Atlanta in terms of representation on the top 100.

  • Bank of America dropped two spots from 77 to 79.
  • San Francisco-based Wells Fargo, which is the second-largest employer in the Charlotte area and maintains its East Coast headquarters here, was 92nd.

Of note: Polling was conducted March 11 through April 3, before last week's New York Times story that detailed incidents of Wells Fargo interviewing Black and women candidates for jobs that were already filled in an effort to meet diversity requirements.

Be smart: Each year, Axios works in partnership with Harris Poll to gauge the reputation of the most visible brands in America, based on 20 years of Harris Poll research.

  • It's a two-step process that first involves surveying the public's top-of-mind awareness of companies that either excel or falter in society.
  • Then those 100 "most visible" companies are ranked by a second group on seven key dimensions — trust, ethics, growth, products/service, citizenship, vision and culture.
  • This year's rankings are based on a survey of 33,096 Americans.

Between the lines: Of the seven key dimensions, Lowe's biggest drop was in products and service, where it fell from 36th to 46th. Its best measurement was for trust.

  • Lowe's top competitor, Atlanta-based Home Depot, jumped 27 spots to No. 18 overall this year.
  • Atlanta had three companies in the top 30: Home Depot, UPS and Chick-fil-A. (Grr.)

The big picture: Trader Joe's topped this year's rankings.

  • Fox Corporation, Facebook and Twitter all ranked in the bottom 10.

Go deeper: Friendly brands poisoned by politics ... Interactive chart.

💼 Fresh openings from our Job Board

If you're on the hunt for a new job, here are 28 to get you started.

  • Customer Liaison at California Closets. Apply.
  • Interior Designer – Senior at VisionBuilders. Apply.
  • Manager, Box Office Bojangles Entertainment Complex at Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority. Apply.
  • Program Manager at Digi-Bridge. Apply.
  • Director of Youth Ministry at Sardis Presbyterian Church. Apply.
  • Design Assistant at Circa Interiors. Apply.
  • Grants and Compliance Manager at Habitat for Humanity of the Charlotte Region. Apply.
  • Commercial Kitchen Designer at VisionBuilders. Apply.
  • HR Coordinator at Nederman. Apply.
  • Content Strategist, Branded Content at American City Business Journals. Apply.
  • In-House Graphic Designer at Free Range Brewing. Apply.
  • Social Media and Influencer Relations Coordinator at Abby's Better Inc. Apply.
  • Lower School Tutor at Charlotte Country Day School. Apply.
  • Philanthropy Officer at McColl Center. Apply.
  • Carnegie Development Trainee at Carnegie. Apply.
  • Manager, Membership Sales NASCAR Hall of Fame at Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority. Apply.
  • Director of Programs at TreesCharlotte. Apply.
  • Recruiting Assistant at Grubb Properties. Apply.
  • Cyber Security Analyst at Grubb Properties. Apply.
  • Assistant Manager, Banquets Charlotte Convention Center at Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority. Apply.
  • Director, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority. Apply.
  • Strategic Account Manager at Cardinal Logistics Management. Apply.
  • Behavior Technician at Carolina Center for ABA and Autism Treatment. Apply.
  • Customer Service Representative/Data Entry Clerk at Cardinal Logistics Management. Apply.
  • Senior HR Recruiter at Moishe House. Apply.
  • Brokerage Account Executive at Cardinal Logistics Management. Apply.
  • Brokerage AP/AR Collections Analyst at Cardinal Logistics Management. Apply.
  • Retail Manager at Braveworks. Apply.

Want more opportunities? Check out all openings on our Job Board.

Hiring? Post a job

🔥 Hot Job

Senior Interior Designer at VisionBuilders Design. 

  • Company overview: A dynamic foodservice and interior design company specializing in hospitality design.
  • In this role: Lead a young interior designer department to meet design/project schedules.
  • Must-have: A minimum of 10 years of experience within the architectural arena.

Interested? Apply here.

2. Biz lightning round: Ted's power (lol) and other bites

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

💵 Bank of America will increase its minimum wage to $22 per hour by the end of June. In a press release, BofA said it's ahead of schedule to meet its goal of a $25 per hour by 2025. (BofA)

🤭 Some Fayetteville residents are unimpressed with the proposed name "Fort Liberty" as a replacement for Fort Bragg. (Fayetteville Observer)

🏅 BusinessNC named Charlotte Agenda (now Axios Charlotte) founder Ted Williams one of the state's most powerful people in media and communications for 2022.

3. 🎈 Happy birthday, Belk

outside of a Belk department store
Photo: Axios Charlotte archives

On May 29, 1888, William Henry Belk opened a bargain store called The New York Racket in Monroe.

  • Three years later, his brother John joined the business as a partner and they renamed it Belk Brothers.
  • The store stood out because it was open early and late to accommodate shoppers with jobs, and it had prices clearly marked on each item.

Why it matters: Belk is no longer the power it once was — is any department store? — but its story is as intertwined with Charlotte's 20th-century growth as any other company.

  • The Belks had a remarkable, century-long run as one of Charlotte's most prominent companies and families, amassing hundreds of stores nationwide.
  • William's son John served as mayor from 1969 to 1977 and pushed for bond referendums to expand the airport, a decision that helped take it from a regional hub to the sixth-busiest airport in the world.

Our thought bubble: Cheers, old friend.

Go deeper: How Belk put Charlotte on the map

4. 🚙 1 pic to go: Race day

nascar cars driving around a track as the sun sets
Photo: Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images

Drivers navigate sunset at last year's Coca-Cola 600.

🙏 I'm rereading this from my friend and WBTV reporter Nick Ochsner, whose father Jim was killed during his fourth tour in Afghanistan in 2005, when Nick was just in high school.