Summary of the article
The article provides an analysis of the key characteristics that have made Wal-Mart the success that it is. Towards the end, however, discussion shifts to the weaknesses that the company has been facing, particularly in recent days. In the introductory paragraphs, the author introduces the origin of Wal-Mart’s Saturday meeting, which has over time shaped out to be part of the company’s culture (Schlender, 2005). The author informs that the idea came to founder Sam Walton, mainly to counter the guilt of having to be off on weekends while everybody else worked. In subsequent paragraphs, the author illustrates the importance of such meetings, pointing out that they came in handy in helping the store’s management point out the elements that slowed down business growth. We are also informed of Walton’s idea of cost-reduction strategies which included cutting down the expenses that went into executive travelling and on-the-road accommodation.
In terms of the weaknesses that slowed down the growth of Wal-Mart, the author first informs us that the company initially had a weak punishment system for errant employees. We are, however, informed that changes were made in regards to this issue and Wal-Mart now has a punishment strategy in place. Recent accusations regarding the alleged employment of illegal immigrants to take care of the company’s cleaning and discrimination in the payment of employees have been listed as some of the issues that have led to Wal-Mart losing credibility in the eyes of the public. In the last paragraph, the author offers suggestions that could help Wal-Mart continue with the growth and influence that Walton had initially set out to achieve.
How might Wal-Mart’s negative press affect employee morale, job sastisfaction, and organizational commitment?
Most workers would like to be associated with institutions that have clean reputation and this applies for the international establishment that Wal-Mart is. In this regard, the negative publicity that Wal-Mart has been getting of late is bound to affect the employee morale and ultimately the quality of service provided. For instance, when it gets to the public that the company has been offering its employees differing payments for the same amount of work, the workers that are paid lower than the others might not continue with the kind of motivation they had earlier. In addition, the negativity that the company becomes associated with after a round of such derogatory publicity also ends up making the workers’ pride in being linked with the organization go down. It is highly unlikely that anyone would pride in working with a company that is known for hiring, overworking and underpaying illegal immigrants. The same goes for allegations coming out presenting Wal-Mart as an anti-union establishment. Individuals would like to be associated with companies that respect the rights of workers and their right of expression. As a manager, the best I can do to improve employee attitudes s to first make sure that all their rights and freedoms are well respected. I will also make sure that all complaints by employees are addressed properly and on time because this will make them feel that their input to the growth of the company is appreciated. This is because human psychology dictates that individuals who feel respected and appreciated offer a better output than those who don’t.
Schlender, Brent. (2005).”Wal-Mart’s $288 Billion Meeting”. Fortune April 2005. Web.