Trace the roots of the culture that supports the growth and success of a company

The Good and Bad of Wal-Mart’s Culture

Trace the roots of the culture that supports the growth and success of a company

Wal-Mart was the biggest company in the world. With sales at a quarter of a trillion and over 1.3 million employees, it was the biggest retailing success ever. A lot of Wal-Mart’s success was attributed to the strong and pervasive culture at the company, which was developed and nurtured by founder Sam Walton. In over four decades of operation, Wal-Mart managed to retain most of the elements of culture it had when it first started out, as well as the entrepreneurial spirit which often drives startup companies to success. The fact that the company’s growth rate was often in double digits bears this out. Wal-Mart’s culture was characterized by an orientation towards customer service and providing the best value at the lowest prices.               

Employee well being was also given a lot of importance and the company tried to project an image of a socially responsible entity.

However, despite the positive aspects and strength of the culture, there were a number of issues on which Wal-Mart was severely criticized. In the light of the number of law suits filed against the company, the top management realized that there were drawbacks in the culture of the company and began taking steps towards correcting them.

Issues:

  1. Trace the roots of the culture that supports the growth and success of a company; in this case, the largest retail organization in the world

  2. Analyze the elements of culture fostered by a company and how they support the company in achieving its basic mission

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