Walmart Firm’s Traits of Leadership and Management

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Introduction

U.S-based Walmart Stores Inc. operates nearly 10, 500 stores and clubs in 24 countries. It owns eCommerce websites and has subsidiaries in 24 countries (Walmart Inc., 2021). It is considered the most prominent public organization globally in terms of revenue in the U.S. In the 2020 fiscal year, Walmart attained a total revenue of $559 billion, ranking top among the U.S. retailers, while Amazon followed by $386 (Kohan, 2020). Walmart’s investments in supply chain automation and seamless customer experience contribute to its success in the U.S. retail sector. Its targeted investments have contributed to accelerated growth in healthcare, financial services, and advertising. This paper presents an in-depth managerial analysis of Walmart Inc. It describes the enterprise and its environment, administrative functions, and an analysis and recommendations for Walmart to achieve effectiveness, efficiency, and stakeholder satisfaction.

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General Description of the Enterprise and Its Environment

The corporation has operations in Canada, Brazil, China, South America, and the UK. However, the organization has expanded in many countries, whereas the core business model is related to its pricing strategy (Fletcher & Arnold, 2019). The company focuses on offering excellent services and innovation, which has enabled the business to expand globally. Walmart leverages technology to achieve a competitive advantage. The enterprise made several ecommerce websites and has been working on leveraging technology to propel growth (Fletcher & Arnold, 2019). The company’ mobile updates allow shoppers to access available in-store services. The company integrates shopper purchase data into an app to assist in online purchases and stores that customers can access. Amazon is among the top competitors of Walmart. Other retail industry competitors comprise Home Depot, the Kroger Company, and Walgreens Boot Alliance (Crosby & Bryson, 2018). The company’s customers are wealthy individuals and perhaps more urban customers to find an opportunity for growth which the investors seek (Tomey, 2019).

Description of Managerial Functions

Planning

The organization uses planning to determine its goals and help the management define the plans to achieve them (Arnold et al., 2018). The vice president and the chief operations officer are mandated to establish strategic goals and plans intended to reflect on the commitment to achieve efficiency and effectiveness. The company has a strategy to expand its operations to global markets and improve on its merchandise pick-up.

Organizing

Organizing is an effort to assemble and coordinate people, funds, physical attributes, and information necessary to achieve corporate goals and objectives (Arnold et al., 2018). Through organizing, the company has attracted several employees and associated them with its organizations and customers to the business due to the urge to be successful and gain a competitive advantage in the retail industry. The organization has a robust global management structure coordinated from it headquarter in the US.

Leading

When focusing on the leading function, the main activities involve inspiring employees and motivating their workplace performance. Therefore, inspiring and motivating employees will enable them to attain organizational objectives (Antonakis & Day, 2018). The store implements progressing management changes regularly to improve its operational efficiencies (Springer, 2020). The leadership and management off Walmart is responsible for its strategic planning.

Controlling

After ensuring that the three functions have been completed and achieved, it is the management’s responsibility to measure and control organizational performance (Arnold et al., 2018). Control function is important for achieving effectiveness, efficiency, and stakeholder satisfaction as Walmart. Control ensures efficient customer satisfaction and timely delivery off groceries. Besides, control function serves to ensure the management develops and implements performance standards. Employees must conform to standards of excellent customer service.

Analysis and Recommendations

The company uses the planning function to develop specific goals and objectives. The planning function indicates ways that Walmart’s goals will be achieved. As a result, it is essential to use the planning function to enable the company to develop and implement plans and action statements. Amazon, a key competitor of Walmart, has invested in international markets to boost its growth. Regarding effectiveness, Keyes (2019) recommends that Walmart should work on its international expansion issues as a key strategy to withstand its rivalry with Amazon. Keyes (2019) notes that Walmart’s efforts to focus on high potential markets such as India rather than the highly competitive markets such as the UK and Brazil have faced diverse challenges. Keyes (2019) recommends that Walmart focuses on high-growth markets, especially in those that have been successful.

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According to Arnold et al. (2018), global expansion is an important strategy that can be applied when the management develops and implements procedures to monitor and keep costs and prices under check. Walmart should focus on global expansion to support its generic strategy. Global expansion will enable the company to achieve economies of scale and support leadership strategy. It will also contribute to the better implementation of processes associated with market development and penetration. India remains a key target market for Walmart’s expansion strategy as noted by Meyersohn (2018). The management prioritizes Walmart’s expansion in India, contrary to the Europe where the competition is high.

Shoulberg (2020) notes that despite Walmart’s success in the U.S. market, its efforts to expand globally have never attained the desired success, especially in the UK. In Germany and Japan, Walmart’s subsidiaries have recorded dismal performance (Shoulberg, 2020). There is an urgent need to improve on customer satisfaction in different global markets. Therefore, the management should design and implement strategies to improve customer satisfaction (Arnold et al., 2018). It is essential to develop ways to increase the faster delivery of products and services to customers. This can be achieved by increasing the workforce involved in the entire process. In addition, the quality of the products should not be compromised.

Regarding efficiency, Walmart has plans to improve the delivery of services at its stores. It adopts delivery services such as Spark Delivery aimed at saving its customers’ time. The store is leveraging technology to improve the customers’ shopping experience. Ladd (2018) recommends that Walmart should not focus on delivering groceries as a strategy to improve efficiency. Instead, it should strive to understand and leverage every opportunity to maximize last-mile delivery. Although Walmart delivers groceries, Ladd (2018) notes that the store should enable customers to order other general merchandises and have them delivered as easily as they do for groceries.

Regarding stakeholder engagement, the welfare of employees is a critical aspect of Walmart’s success. Besides satisfied customers, Walmart demands to have a productive staff. In 2015, the decision to increase employees’ salaries resulted in improved sales across Walmart’s stores (Workopolis, 2017). Workopolis (2017) notes that, besides increased salaries and wages, the way people feel at work also matter a great deal in improving their productivity. Walmart, therefore, must focus on constant improvement of employees’ welfare to ensure high productivity and profitability.

Conclusion

In this analysis, it can be concluded that there are four management areas discussed, which comprise planning, organizing, leading, and controlling the company’s activities. Therefore, the organization’s business activities can be understood through evaluating management and the evolution of management theories. These comprise management functions, globalization, logistics, technology, communication, and information systems. The administration should adopt the decision-making process to measure and monitor the possible alternatives and actions to achieve the organizational objectives.

References

Antonakis, J., & Day, D. V. (2018). Leadership: Past, present, and future. In J. Antonakis & D. V. Day (Eds.), The nature of leadership (pp. 3-26). Sage.

Arnold, R., Fletcher, D., & Hobson, J. A. (2018). Performance leadership and management in elite sport: A black and white issue or different shades of grey? Journal of Sport Management, 32(5), 452-463. Web.

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Crosby, B. C., & Bryson, J. M. (2018). Why leadership of public leadership research matters: And what to do about it. Public Management Review, 20(9), 1265-1286. Web.

Fletcher, D., & Arnold, R. (2019). A qualitative study of performance leadership and management in elite sport. Journal of Applied Sport Psychology, 23(2), 223-242.

Keyes, D. (2019). Walmart is facing obstacles overseas. Business Insider, Web.

Kohan, S. E. (2021). Walmart revenue hits $559 billion for fiscal year 2020. Forbes, Web.

Ladd, B. (2018). Playing to its strengths: Why Walmart must focus on its stores and logistics. Forbes, Web.

Meyersohn, N. (2018). What is Walmart’s global plan? CNNMoney, Web.

Shoulberg, W. (2020). Will Walmart ever be successful overseas? Forbes, Web.

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Springer, J. (2020). Walmart details sweeping restructure of its supercenter workforce: Fewer leadership roles, more versatility accompany salary, bonus changes. Web.

Our Business. (2021), Walmart Inc. Web.

Workopolis (2017). The Walmart effect: Can raising salaries increase productivity? Winsight Grocery Business. Web.

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