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By D Magazine |

Anybody who has ever searched for a job in the corporate jungle ought to find some interesting reading in The 100 Best Companies to Work for in America,written by Robert Levering, Milton Moskowitzand Michael Katz.The book, due on the market in early May from the Addison-Wesley Publishing Co., lists 24 of the top 100 as having headquarters, factories or offices in Texas. About half of those are in the Dallas/Fort Worth area.

The authors rated the companies according to pay, benefits, job security, chances for advancement and ambiance. They visited the headquarters of all the companies that were under consideration and interviewed both management and employees to get a better idea of which corporations practiced what they preached.

In Dallas/Fort Worth:

Anheuser-Busch Companies.Corporate headquarters is in St. Louis, but the company employs about 2,400 people in the Dallas/Fort Worth area in various subsidiaries that include Campbell-Taggart and Sesame Place. Biggest plus: “You can swing for the fences here.” Biggest minus: “If you don’t hit a home run, you might be benched permanently.” An interesting tidbit: Everyone who works for the company is entitled to two free cases of beer a month.

Apple Computer. Headquarters in Cupertino, California; employs about 500 people in its Carrollton manufacturing facility. Biggest plus: “You feel like a trailblazer, and there’s a pot of gold at the end of the trail.” Biggest minus: “The company may be munched to death by Big Blue [IBM].” The average age here is 30, and blue jeans are as welcome as business suits.

Atlantic Richfield Co. (ARCO) Headquarters in Los Angeles; employs about 3,600 people in Piano and Dallas in its oil and research subsidiaries. Biggest plus: “The oil company that cares most about its people.” Biggest minus: “With the two architects of the company culture gone (or about to leave), the engineers are in control again.” The 1,100 employees who were laid off when the copper smelter in Anaconda, Montana, was shut down won’t like ARCO’s ratings, but it should be commended for staffing its corporate newspaper with professional journalists who actually criticize the company.

Trammel] Crow Co. Headquarters in Dallas; employs about 200 people. We ought to mention up front that this company was ranked in the top 10 by the authors. Biggest plus: “Money, money, money.” Biggest minus: “It’s either sink or swim.” The profit-sharing trust is so well-developed that at least one secretary retired as a millionaire.

Delta Air Lines Inc. Headquarters in Atlanta; employs about 4,000 people in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. Biggest plus: “A family feeling despite its huge size.” Biggest minus: “Nobody leaves, so it’s hard to move up.” Delta has a reputation for being a tad conservative (when one stewardess disrobed for a Playboyphotographer, the airline clipped her wings-permanently).

International Business Machines (IBM).Headquarters in Armonk, New York; employs about 6,000 people in the Dallas/Fort Worth area in its various marketing and product centers. Biggest plus: “They make you feel like a giant.” Biggest minus: “After working here for a while, you don’t know how to make your own hotel reservations.” A company joke says that IBM’s initials really stand for “I’ve Been Moved” because of the seemingly endless number of employee transfers.

Johnson & Johnson Products.Headquarters in New Brunswick, New Jersey; employs about 2,500 people in its Arlington facility, Surcikos (a manufacturer of sterile surgical apparatus) and 750 people in its Sherman manufacturing facility. It also operates a home health-care office in Grand Prairie with about 60 employees. Biggest plus: “They know right from wrong.” Biggest minus: “It tends to be stuffy.” The company’s sense of morality helped it to survive the “Tylenol laced with cyanide” crisis about two years ago.

Mary Kay Cosmetics Inc. Headquarters in Dallas; employs about 1,300 people. Biggest plus: “You get to look at the world through pink-colored glasses.” Biggest minus: “A revival-meeting atmosphere that doesn’t quit.” The authors warn male chauvinists to stay away from the woman-managed company.

Tandy Corp. Headquarters in Fort Worth; employs almost 6,000 people in the Fort Worth area. Biggest plus: “The American dream is still true.” Biggest minus: “Street fighters get along best.” This company seems to breed millionaires.

The other companies singled out as some of the best to work for in Texas are Advanced Micro Devices in Austin, CRS Sirrine in Houston, Eastman Kodak in Longview, Exxon in Houston, Hospital Corp. of America statewide, Intel Corp. in Austin, Levi Strauss Co. in Amarillo, 3M statewide, Nucor in Grapeland, ROLM in Austin. Shell Oil in Houston, Tandem Computers Inc. in Austin, Tenneco in Houston and Wkl-Mart Stores Inc. statewide.

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