Having recently read books about both Henry Ford of Model T fame and Sam Walton of Walmart, perhaps the two most influential business geniuses of the twentieth century, I was taken by the differences in which they reportedly treated their employees.
Sam Walton said, "In so many businesses, most managers lead by fear and intimidation. They think that being tough is being a leader. Nothing is further from the truth. Good leaders will treat people 'good' and add the human factor to all aspects of their business."
A Kind Outlook
I admit I've had the perception of Walmart being, well . . . Walmart. It wasn't until I delved into the history of the company and its people that I came to appreciate their philosophy of treating employees and customers as family (uhm, the best parts of family).
"Mr. Sam," as he was known to his associates [employees], also said, "Another very important principle for us is to live and stay with our people through the good times and the bad times . . . Life is a business of momentum; sometimes you are up, sometimes you are down. In 'down times' your associates need your love and support more than at any other time."
Universal Law Connection
Whether deliberate or not, these words demonstrate an alignment with universal law and principles. Giving always comes before and predetermines receiving whether you're giving your thought, word, service, or conscious action including appreciation for a job well done and compassion and understanding when needed. This is contrasted with an attitude of getting, which is an attitude of limitation.
Yowza! Pressed Down and Running Over
In a spectacular display of outcome, Walmart has become the world's largest brick and mortar retailer. In 2016 Forbes listed the multi-billionaire Walton family as the richest in America. As of recent news, Walmart is giving Amazon, the world's largest online retailer, a run for its money.
In a fun bit of irony, Walmart and Lord & Taylor, the oldest luxury department store in the United States, will soon be partnering to offer Lord & Taylor's upscale merchandise through Walmart's online store.
Keeping it Real
So as not to get too lofty from the viewpoint of the flying pig, here's taking it back to Sam:
"We are all just people with our varying strengths and weaknesses. So true commitment, plus a generous portion of understanding and communication, will certainly help us win. Remember, leaders must always put their people before themselves. If you are able to do that, your business will take care of itself."
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