Propaganda & Mass Persuasion: Wal-Mart: Know What Your Getting Into..

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Wal-Mart: Know What Your Getting Into..

"On Private Web Site, Wal-Mart Chief Talks Tough"
By Steven Greenhouse and Michael Barbaro

Wal-Mart is the largest, most used establishment of its kind. It plays a huge role in the United States. Although there are many good sides to this establishment, there area a lot of thing that go on behind the scenes that would shock and appall its customers. In this article from the New York Times, the authors exposed some of the true views of management from Wal-Mart. They had access to one of their private websites in which some of the executives would post questions and answers. The only thing about this site is that everyday people do not have access to it.

Greenhouse and Barbaro expose one of the postings from a Wal-Mart representitive, Mr. Scott. In a question about benefits for their hard working retirees Scott's answer was very insensitive. "Quite honestly, this environment isn't for everyone. There are people who would say, 'I'm sorry, but you should take the risk and take billions of dollars out of earnings and put this in retiree health benefits and let's see what happens to the company.' If you feel that way, then you as a manager should look for a company where you can do those kinds of things."

Companies like Wal-Mart that bring in billions of dollars a year in revenue should not be able to treat their hard working employees like this. This basically shows how much they care about their workers. And though the establishment does alot for communities all over this country, their downside is the mistreatment of their employees. Without their employees there would be no Wal-Mart. So why not show a little appreciation?


Blogger A. Mattson said...

Remember this is a class in media and mass persuasion. We are interested in Wal-Mart as an example of a corporation that has faced significant challenges to its public image.

How has Wal-Mart responded to the kind of charges that you are making in this post? What should a corporation do to answer negative publicity?

Here you have an example of Lee Scott (who was the CEO and president of Wal-Mart at the time) making a statement that made good business sense but very poor public relations copy. It exposed the corporation to the criticism of being heartless and only concerned with the bottom line and not their employees health.

Keeping costs down will inevitably lead to decisions that will not play well in the media. What should Wal-Mart do then? What did they do when this news story broke?

4/23/2009 11:30 AM  

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