Application Paper: Wal-Mart Corporate Values and Social Responsibility July 11, The company I selected is Wal-Mart, the global leader in the retail industry. This firm often faces controversy due to the fact that the company negatively impacts small businesses near its locations that cannot compete with Wal-Mart in terms of price. Wal-Mart is able to obtain economies of scale with its bulk purchases. Despite the negative perception of the company by a sector of society Wal-Mart is a socially responsible firm. The data provided in this essay regarding the social responsibility initiatives of the company was retrieved from Wal-Mart 2012 Global Responsibility Report (Walmarstores, 2012).
The mission statement of Wal-Mart is we save people money so they can live better (About, 2012). The initiatives of the company are aligned with its mission because Wal-Mart has helped feed millions of people around the world. Wal-Mart has a complete social responsibility program that covers many aspects of social responsibility. As a firm that has billions of dollars in inventory, the company provides relief to people in need during natural disasters. The company responded immediately when the Katrina earthquake hit by donating $5 million. The firm has also help the victims of the Japan earthquake, floods in Mexico and Texas. To become more effective in its disaster relief efforts the company often partners with agencies such as FEMA and the Red Cross. The company demonstrates compassion and that they care about people in need. Wal-Mart is a company that believes in the value of philanthropy. The firm in 2011 donated money and merchandise worth $954 million. The goal of the company by 2015 is to donate 1.1 billion pounds of food and $250 million in cash.
The organization has an environmentally friendly program to reduce the emissions and pollution produced by its operations. For instance Wal-Mart has installed 100 solar energy units at different locations. These solar power stores eliminate the dependency of the company on the electricity grid. Another technology that Wal-Mart stores are using to save energy is the installation of LED lights. The company has 180 renewable energy projects in operation that generate one billion kilowatts of renewable electricity. The company is the second largest buyer of renewable energy among U.S. retailers.
The implementation of a solid corporate social responsibility program is a good strategic move that can help a business. Companies that act socially responsible attract the support and business of many consumers. Environmentally friendly initiatives are perceived by society in a positive manner. Wal-Mart can benefit from the use of a socially responsible program by improving the brand value of the company. The consumers of the 21st century expect companies to be responsible. Companies that do not act in socially responsible manner are subject to bad publicity from the media and press.
Wal-Mart has benefited a lot from its corporate social responsibility initiatives. The company has been able to increase its customer and employee retention rates. The firm also directly benefits from the movement towards green products by selling them in its stores. We wont have a society if we destroy the environment (Mead, 2012). The actions of Wal-Mart are helping protect the environment.
About.com (2012). Wal-Mart Stores’ Mission Statement – People, Saving Money, Living a Better Life. Retrieved July 10, 2012 from http://retailindustry.about.com/od/retailbestpractices/ig/Company-Mission-Statements/Wal-Mart-Mission-Statement.htm
Mead, M. (2012). Eco quotes. Retrieved July 10, 2012 from http://ecohearth.com/quizzes-quotes-tips/eco-quotes.html
Walmartstores.com (2012). 2012 Global Responsibility Report. Retrieved July 10, 2012 from http://www.walmartstores.com/sites/responsibility-report/2012/pdf/WMT_2012_GRR.pdf