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Wal-Mart Ethical Issue

[2013]

By
Sara O. Alahmad
Sara Alsolai
Mona Alsaif
Qumasha Altassan
Tala Mandou

Introducing Wal-Mart and its History:
Nowadays it is difficult to found a new business and turn it into worldwide cooperation. It needs several steps to create and maintain a successful business. One of the biggest most successful and important cooperation in the world is Wal-Mart which was founded by Sam Walton in 1962. The first branch opened in Rogers Arkansas. Today, Wal-Mart operates more than 10,700 retail units under 69 banners in 27 countries. And these countries are: Argentina, Botswana, Brazil, Canada, Chile China, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Ghana, Guatemala, Honduras, India, Japan, Lesotho, Malawi, Mexico, Mozambique, Namibia, Nicaragua, Nigeria, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Uganda, United Kingdom, United States, and Zambia. We employ 2.2 million associates around the world, 1.4 million in the U.S. alone.

Summary
Introducing the ethical issues:
This case study report is about the ethical frame work within which Wal-Mart, a multinational convenience store, operates in and about the ethical challenges faced by it over the years. It also analyses how the company has reacted to the challenges with a view of recreating perceptions and ensuring sustainability in the future. It considers the actions taken by management to mitigate a perceived likelihood of consumer and employee upheavals as well as continuing numbers of law suits as a result of the company’s ethical infractions. Based on the analysis of the case study presented the provisional analysis and recommendation is reported upon in this paper. Our findings indicate that the actions and policies affected by management after the ethical issues arose had an objective of covering up larger infractions as well as to create a smokescreen that the issues had been resolved (John Fraedrich, 2010). This was and has been achieved consistently through paid for publicity in local media as well as depoliticalization of the commercial process. In this paper we continue to build upon the realization that business operates in a social environment where ethics and morality have a role to play. Their lack has repercussions on business performance and perception by locals. Discrimination of employees and unfair treatment of them is one of the largest areas regarding ethics that a good manager should strive to eliminate. Wal-Mart is an internationally respected and influential global business. It employs millions of people worldwide and receives billions of dollars in revenues from its operations globally. It also pays out huge amounts of dollars in corporate tax and corporate social responsibility activities. With power comes great responsibility and increased public scrutiny. Companies have an obligation to promote ethical and fair behavior by company employees and management. This also applies to suppliers of huge companies such as Wal-Mart. * Wal-Mart past issues:

Wal-Mart has in the past and currently grappled with numerous scandals evoking public outrage and court actions. Ethical issues surrounding management, treatment of employees, fiscal responsibility, and outsourcing have been on the fore front of the poor public relations exhibited by Wal-Mart over the years. Wal-Mart has had issues surrounding women employees and opportunities at the workplace. There are allegations that Wal-Mart discriminates female employees, paying them lower salaries as compared to men in similar positions of responsibility. Although two thirds of its employees are female, less than ten percent of them occupy prominent managerial or supervision roles in the organization. Wal-Mart has also faced accusations of sourcing supplies from companies and countries with poor ethical and morality standards as well as companies hiring illegal immigrants. Wal-Mart has also been claimed to have an illegal overseas workshop that produces merchandise sold in its stores....
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