"Our Friday merchandising meeting is unique to retailing as far as I can tell. Here we have all theseregional managers who have been out in the field all week longthey are the operations guys who directthe running of the stores. Then you have all your merchandising folks back in Bentonvillethe people whobuy for the stores. In retailing, there has always been a traditional, head-to-head confrontation betweenoperations and merchandising. You know, the operations guys say, 'Why in the world would anybodybuy this It's a dog, and we'll never sell it.' Then the merchandising folks say, 'There's nothing wrong withthat item. If you guys were smart enough to display it well and promote it properly, it would blow out thedoors.' That's the way it is everywhere, including Wal-Mart. So we sit all these folks down togetherevery Friday at the same table and just have at it. The way business is conducted worldwide is going to be different, and a lot of that difference is going toreflect what we egotistically think of as the Wal-Mart Way. In the global economy, successful business isgoing to do just what Wal-Mart is always trying to do: give more and more responsibility for makingdecisions to the people who are actually on the firing line, those who deal with the customers every day. "Later on, after that Conway Wal-Mart opened up, Sam called me and told me what the sales were. Ithought, 'My gosh, that store did as much in one day as some of our bigger stores do in a month.' Andthen he told me he was only paying ninety cents a square foot. And I thought, 'He must have somethingthere.' About that time, Newberry's decided to reorganize and I was going to have to move to a newdivision. So I thought, 'Well, if I'm going to have to start over in a company where I've worked fortwenty-one years, why not look at something I'm really interested in' and that was discounting and SamWalton. 亚洲欧洲自拍图片专区_亚洲图揄拍自拍_亚洲欧洲自拍拍偷 Not that I'm trying to poor-mouth here. We certainly have had more than adequate funds in this familyfor a long timeeven before we got Wal-Mart cranked up. Here's the thing: money never has meant thatmuch to me, not even in the sense of keeping score. If we had enough groceries, and a nice place to live,plenty of room to keep and feed my bird dogs, a place to hunt, a place to play tennis, and the means toget the kids good educationsthat's rich. No question about it. And we have it. We're not crazy. Wedon't live like paupers the way some people depict us. We all love to fly, and we have nice airplanes, butI've owned about eighteen airplanes over the years, and I never bought one of them new. We have ourfamily meetings at fine places like the Ritz-Carlton inNaples,Florida, or the Del Coronado inSan Diego. At our size today, there's all sorts of pressure to regiment and standardize and operate as a centrallydriven chain, where everything is decided on high and passed down to the stores. In a system like that,there's absolutely no room for creativity, no place for the maverick merchant that I was in the early daysat Ben Franklin, no call for the entrepreneur or the promoter. Man, I'd hate to work at a place like that,and I worry every single day about Wal-Mart becoming that way. I stay on these guys around here allthe time about it. Of course, all those vendors and suppliers would love to see us get that way. It wouldmake their jobs a lot simpler for sure. If anybody at Wal-Mart thinks we as a company are immune toBig Disease, I wish they'd just pack up and leave right now because it's always something we'll have toworry about. For example, we've got one store in Panama City, Florida, and another only five miles away in PanamaCity Beach, but actually they're worlds apart when it comes to their merchandise mix and their customerbase. They're entirely different kinds of stores. One is built for tourists going to the beach, and the other ismore like the normal Wal-Mart, built for folks who live in town. That's why we try our best to put amerchant in charge of each store, and to develop other merchants as the heads of each department inthose stores. If the merchandise mix is really going to be right, it has to be managed by the merchandisersthere on the scene, the folks who actually deal face to face with the customers, day in and day out,through the seasons.