The principal Wal-Mart’s objective is to invest in efficient and innovative processes that improve people’s lives, create new markets and continue to make Wal-Mart a trusted leader in the market. In total, today global presence of Wal-Mart includes 111 subsidiaries in the form of sales, production, and distribution subsidiaries, as well as eight overseas business divisions representing Europe, North America, Southeast Asia, China, Southwest Asia, South and Central America, Middle East, CIS, and Africa. The case below presents the current situation of Wal-Mart Company with a detailed analysis of the strategies it seeks to pursue in the future.
At Wal-Mart, human resource is focused on improving functional strategies, which aim at successful implementation of sweeping corporate strategies. The company’s corporate strategies and human resources function in alignment with each other and are coordinated. The human resource department works on improving and facilitating employees’ performance through providing maximum opportunity and building the environment encouraging employees to participate in decision-making and organizational planning process. Wal-Mart has a unique business approach of catering for each customer’s unique needs. The United States, being among the best-performing economies of the world, enjoys rapid development and economic growth enhanced by macro-economic elements, which arise from strong population and the GDP growth. The company created a platform for rewarding employees for excellence by aligning accomplishments of individual employee with organization’s objectives and mission.
Through it performance management process, Wal-Mart makes the entire organization’s staff understand the importance of certain jobs in producing outcomes. Through the establishment of clear behaviors and actions, the company aids its employees in understanding its expectations and setting standards. Following the emergence of the United States as the regional hub, customers’ needs tend to be specific within various segments. Wal-Mart‘s strategic plan is addressing the existing gap of market penetration and coverage of its products. It is possible through building a relationship–based, customer-centric business model, which serves the under-served and yet un-served customer segments in line with the unique needs of each customer. The company has a structured and defined performance management system, which resulted in accomplishment of business objectives. As Cohen (1995) asserts, organizations without performance management are likely to fail. However, performance management has its drawbacks, which include favoritism, risk of internal competition, manager’s dilemma etc. It is time-consuming and expensive, bureaucratic and convoluted (Cohen 21).
Wal-Mart would not have endured and grown to such extent, unless it had effective and unique corporate values, goals, and culture. Wal-Mart truly values its human resources, as well as customers and up-to-date technology. The company was experiencing continuous growth since its inception. Its mission statement has been somewhat unique, since it is alert to both its own evolution and new global developments. Its mission includes making a positive contribution to the nation’s economy in pursuit of rationalism while prioritizing human resources. The compound mission statement is a true reflection of Wal-Mart’s corporate goals, values and missions. The three statements, when taken separately, represent the company’s growth and development stages from a local little store to a multinational giant. The management philosophy of Wal-Mart circles around its wishes of directly contributing to the prosperity of people worldwide. The statement may be somewhat naive, but it represents additional values that are beyond commercial ideas. Wal-Mart pays significant attention to its personnel just like any successful multinational corporation. Human resources are the greatest asset a company can have. It is Wal-Mart’s belief that the way, in which it is managed, is critically beneficial not only for the company’s financial health, but also for the prosperity of people and society at large.
According to Gartside (1981), Wal-Mart follows simple business philosophy by devoting its efforts and talents to investing in products of superior quality, which contribute to health of a global society. It ensures that its workforce contributes to this philosophy. Its management searches for the greatest talents the world can offer to combine with the resources of the company to produce superior goods. The result of these massive investments is the production of quality goods and the power to enrich lives. Wal-Mart’s belief is that living by strong values is the key to successful business. These core values and a rigorous code of conduct are the heart of any decision made by the management. It values its people by dedicating a wealth of opportunities to attain full life’s potentials. Durable passion for excellence is the key drive of every Wal-Mart’s operation, which is intertwined with its commitment to invest in best products. In the current fast paced global economy, innovation is critical, and change is constant to the survival of a company. The management has always set its sight on the future with anticipations for market demands and needs to steer Wal-Mart towards success. The foundation of Wal-Mart’s business is its ethical operations. Every operation in the company is guided by a moral compass, which ensures respect, fairness, and complete transparency for all shareholders. However, no business can be successful without creating opportunity and prosperity for others. Therefore, Wal-Mart is dedicated to being an environmentally and socially responsible corporate citizen in all areas of its operations (Gartside 89).
Wal-Mart is a company of good financial health with approximately two hundred thousand workers with great professional experience. Its workforce performs impressively and is efficient in tracking of various chemical, environmental, and industrial projects. The company maintains its prices at a reasonable level with a goal of remaining competitive in the global market. There is a room for improvement in pricing. Wal-Mart manages the company in an extremely efficient way to remain productive and competitive because of a stiff global competition. Wal-Mart’s leadership is very close to the entire corporate structure. The leadership supports management theory, which values the company’s employees by treating them as the most valuable assets that their operations are pegged on. It is committed to propelling the company forward by encouraging its growth and development. It is the company’s belief that only the best services and products survive in the prevailing global market. The leadership stimulates teamwork within Wal-Mart with the aim of deriving maximum commitment by developing a sense of family, where employees feel their contributions are valued. The company is built in line with a strategy that makes the lives of employees, customers, managers, and shareholders better (Fishman 57).
Recently the company’s external marketing strategy became aggressive. The company has opted for selling its products to developing countries of Asia and Eastern Europe in addition to marketing its business to developed nations of North America and Western Europe. The company committed to this strategy because the people of these regions have higher disposable income as their economies develop. Russia and other former members of the Soviet Union have gradually become attractive markets to invest money in, which can be attributed to the rapid growth of economy in these countries (Sommer 34).
Wal-Mart is a leader in supporting people’s welfare as well as their communities in a number of ways. One area of focus is science education, as well as creative thinking, which encourage leadership. Further, it supports access to education for children from low-income families by funding educational infrastructure and supporting and discovering outstanding students. Wal-Mart also supports programs that enhance the well-being of people. The company also supports diverse cultural and artistic activities around the world. Over the years, it has contributed to the development of numerous museums, exhibits, and galleries in Korea, France and the United States. It further supports and hosts various cultural events with programs that foster early artistic development of children. The company promotes strengthening of minds by supporting creativity, and this is a primary focus of several Wal-Mart’s programs.