Wal-Mart’s history is one of innovation, leadership and success. It

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorUniversity, Master's February 2008

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Wal-Mart?s history is one of innovation, leadership and success. It started with a single man, Sam Walton, a leader with an innovative vision, starting his own company and making it into what it is today. In 1962, Sam Walton opened his first discount-store in Rogers, Arkansas, selling brand name goods in high volume at low prices. Sam Walton?s talent for discont retailing, continued as he created a national chain of Wal-Mart stores in small towns, often bringing financial ruin to hundreds of local merchants. In 1979, Wal-Mart went public on the New York Stock exchange, trading at $2 per share. The company?s unique distribution system, along with Waltons hands-on management style, aided the company?s exponential growth throughout the 1980?s. By the early 1990s, Wal-Mart?s annual revenue exceeded that of its major competitors, including Sears and Kmart. In 1992, with 1,700 stores nationwide, Wal-Mart became the largest retailer, allowing Sam Walton to rank number one on Forbes magazine?s list of ?The 400 Richest People in America?.

Walton served as Wal-Mart?s president and CEO until 1988; he then held the title of chairman until his death from cancer on April 5, 1992. Today, 10 years after his death,the company still growing steadily. With revenues of over $100 billion, 3,000 stores and more than 750,000 employees worldwide. Wal-Mart continues to operate with the same philosophy initiated by Sam Walton, provide everday low prices and superior customer service.

In order to maintain its market position in the discount retail business, Wal-Mart executives continue to adhere to the management guidelines developed by Sam Walton. Walton was a man of values and took an interest in everyday people. He believed in three guiding principles. that have become a part of the companies mission, beginning with excellence in the workplace, customer service and always...



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