Walmart is a multinational retail company that has started as a small discount store with their mission to sell more items for a cheaper cost. They first opened for business in 1962 in the United States in Rogers, Arkansas and later established a Walmart Canada in 1994. They are located in 27 different countries with their Canadian headquarters located in Mississauga, Ontario. With over 11000 retail units worldwide, it is no wonder why Walmart is deemed the world’s largest retail chain. Their continuous success can be attributed to the various products/services they offer and due to their incredibly low prices. Their slogan, “Save Money. Live better.” is exactly how people feel when shopping at Walmart and is also what makes them a return customer. It has become a norm for everyone to shop at Walmart for their everyday needs that include, groceries, clothing, electronics, pharmaceuticals, as well as photo, finance, and wireless services. To add, Walmart is a company who has hired approximately 2.2 million associates across the globe. With this many people on their team, they are also one of the leading retailers who provide such a large amount of people with employment. Another interesting fact that holds true to Walmart is the fact that in their fiscal year that ended at the end of January 2019, they have reported a total revenue of 514.4 billion dollars. Lastly, with all of Walmart’s success, it is important to note the fact that Walmart has not always succeeded when entering a foreign country. For example, Walmart was not able to open stores in Germany as the Germans were not fond of the American culture that was imposed onto them. As a result, this major blow to Walmart cost them almost a billion dollars and also lost them the chance to do business with the country that has the largest economy in Europe.
In order for any business to thrive, they must follow what it means to be socially responsible. Corporate social responsibility refers to an organization’s obligation to conduct their business in a way that satisfies their own interests as well as the interests of society as a whole. Walmart does this exceptionally well through a number of different ways. For one, Walmart is very engaged in giving back to the community with efforts in regards to issues such as disasters and hunger relief. A more specific example comes from the fact that Walmart and the Walmart Foundation have invested approximately 100 million dollars towards Feeding America since 2005. Feeding America is a U.S. based company that is a country wide chain of food banks. Another significant way Walmart gives back to the community is through assisting in the recovery after natural disasters take place such as the tragic hurricanes in Puerto Rico and much of the Southern U.S. This event that took place in 2017 showcased how much Walmart helps when it truly matters as according to their 2018 Global Responsibility Report, “In FY2017, Walmart and the Walmart Foundation pledged $25 million in cash and in-kind donations to support disaster preparedness and relief through FY2021” (Walmart, 2018). Their generosity does not stop there as they do not only want to just help with the situation at hand, but rather have a more permanent impact. Thus, to combat such disasters they also try to make the entire community more prepared for these types of catastrophes by providing them with innovation and technology. To add, Walmart also does what they can to maintain the environment for future generations to come. This directly relates to the concept of an organization being an open system. This term introduces the idea that the activities that go on in a company directly impacts the environment and in return affects back onto the business. One phenomenal way that Walmart adjusts to protect the environment is through their program called Project Gigatron in which Walmart encourages their suppliers to accompany them in reducing emissions by 2030 by 1 billion tons (Gigatron). This is equivalent to taking 211 million cars off the road for an entire year.
I believe that it truly does make a difference when it comes to whether or not I want to shop at Walmart. Knowing all the things they do to give back, while also being mindful of their impact on the environment makes me feel that this company deserves my business. It is reassuring to know that where I choose to spend my money is a place that does not only care about making a profit off of me but also genuinely cares for the world around them. I also find it intriguing that a vast corporation like this even makes an effort to contribute back to the world even though they do not necessarily need to in order to keep their business successful. In addition, quite frankly I do think their decisions to be so socially responsible comes in to play when attracting new customers. Despite the minor disadvantages such as losing short-term profits and an increase in costs, I personally believe that the advantages such as the satisfaction of helping others as well as long-term increase in profits outweighs them.
After learning about how much Walmart does for the world, I have come to the conclusion that working for a company that is extremely socially responsible with a strong corporate culture, is something that truly resonates with me. Joining an incredible team like Walmart, gives me the opportunity to only learn the skills that fall along with my job title but also provides me the chance to contribute on a global scale that has everlasting effects. In contrast, a company that could be considered polar opposites of Walmart, who does not care for interests of society is something that I hope to stay away from. In a time that arguably needs it the most where global issues such poverty, crime, unemployment, and pollution are more prominent than ever, I believe that it is my duty to involve myself in a corporation that builds bridges to find solutions instead of finding ways to break them down. Overall, for these reasons I would most definitely work for Walmart if given the opportunity to join such a corporation.