Sam Walton was a genius mogul and was the founder of Wal-Mart. His retail visionary skills took a small-town variety store in Alabama, and transformed it into the largest retail company in the world. Even after his death, 20 years ago, he influence is still witness today in the retail industry.
Be an Innovator
Sam Walton’s main philosophy was to keep cost low, which kept prices low. It is a simple premise but is very problematical in practical use. This brings me to the first lesson that I have learned from Sam Walton, innovation. Mr. Walton did not create the retail commercial he modernized and change the business model to fit his quixotic. “Walton also looked outside of his company when it came to developing technologies, and as a result Wal-Mart grew into one of the first retailers to connect its stores in a network to headquarters, resulting in still greater efficiency” (Springer, 2010, 154). In the beginning, Walton did not know anything about the retail business, but he could generate theories from other retailers. “Walton in a recorded interview admitted he knew so little about the retail business at that time that he, "Started doing strange things" that were not a part of the Ben Franklin playbook, including selling ice cream and popcorn outside the stores – ‘anything I could hawk’ (Springer, 2010).
His achievement of innovation was to pioneer the now famous everyday-low-price strategy that has focus on efficiency with better profit margins. With innovation comes the willingness to gamble on different ideas. Since Wal-Mart is a merchandising company, he was able to cut operation cost and was able to control direct labor. American workers demand high labor cost, which can drive operational overhead costs skyrocketing. To keep labor cost low, he imported products from other countries to condense cost. “In recent years, many companies have sent jobs from high labor-cost countries such as the United States to lower labor-cost countries such as India and China” (Brewer, Garrison, & Noreen, 2010, 98). This helped Wal-Mart to keep prices low and reduce labor cost. By thinking outside the box, Wal-Mart became a super-giant by hiring people from a grocery store experience because they knew how to keep operational overhead low because they deal with high-volume-low-profit instead of low-volume-high-profit. This innovation kept labor operation slim, which made profit margins high because of customers’ wiliness to buy more discounted products than just purchasing one expensive item during a visit.
Become a Risk Taker
The second lesson is never being afraid to take risk or fail. If a plan does not work do not be afraid to try some else new. Risk is a part of business and sometimes incorporating new ideas can either break or make a company. When Walton started working at other retail stores after college where, he was not fit for retail business. He joined J. C. Penney after graduation, but was belittle by his line manager with the...