1. Examine the countries where your company does business according to where they rank on the Hofstede cultural dimensions. Think of some examples of how a U.S. manager would need to modify his or her behavior when communicating with associates from one or more of these foreign countries. [“Write my essay for me?” Get help here.]
Walmart operates more than 11,500 retail units in 28 countries under 63 banners. This has ensured that the company has opened some branches in foreign countries. The management needs to ensure that their managers exhibit good communications and behavior when dealing with foreigners. The company should ensure that the managers of various companies are aware of cross-cultural communication skills to avoid situations where people from foreign countries are not treated well (Walmart, 2016). For example, when a United State manager is communicating with people from Tanzania, they should ensure that they observe their behavior since African countries usually embrace their culture.
2. Does your company operate in any countries that are considered very politically or economically risky?
Yes, the company has operated in economically risky countries like Mexico. This has been as a result of low confidence of the consumer and the uniform slowdown of the economy. This has led to slow growth of the company, though it has considered maintaining the units in such countries.
3. Does your company primarily operate in civil law or common law countries? What are some of the implications of this?
Yes, Walmart operates in countries like the United Kingdom and the United States that operates under common law. Common law has some implication to business operating in the country since they do not usually have a written constitution that would give the guarantee in protecting the business through the judicial decision is binding (Stephen, 2014). Before investing in such countries, there is need to ensure that the rights protecting the business are clearly stipulated. [“Write my essay for me?” Get help here.]
4. Has your company purchased any insurance from the U.S. Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC)?
No, the company has not yet purchased any insurance from U.S overseas private investment corporation though some of the products supplied in their outlets are got from farms that have been insured by OPIC like coffee from Rwanda.
5. What are some key intellectual property protections, if any, that your company possesses? When do these protections (e.g., patents) expire? How does your company intend to recoup lost revenues due to any patent or other intellectual property protection expirations?
Walmart has ensured that its intellectual property is protected. The company has ensured that its site is protected and all the materials available in the site like illustrations, icons, logos, designs, programs, photographs among others can be solely used for personal use and not commercial. For personal use, one is allowed to copy, download, view or print all the material displayed on the site but also ensure that the all the copyright or trademark contained are not tempered, modified or altered in any way. Walmart reserves and owns all title, rights, and interests in and to intellectual property rights in all content available on their site. The company renews its intellectual property right annually to avoid expiration (Bitton, 2012). Walmart has not lost any revenue through expiration of any patent or intellectual property protection.
6. Find the Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) score for two countries where your selected company does business, one country with a relatively high score and one country with a relatively low score. Search for news stories about corporate financial scandals in these two countries. Prepare a summary of news stories about financial scandals in these countries. Briefly describe what you perceive are the risks of corruption, such as paying bribes, that your selected company might face in these countries.
According to Transparency International (2015), Japan has a Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) score of 75 while Lesotho has 44 as per the year 2015. The latest biggest financial scandal in Japan is that of Olympus Corp that happened in the year 2011. This was a fraudulent takeover that involved hiding $1.7 billion losses that had happed for a span of 13 years. The former chairman of the company and two more executives pleaded guilty in 2012 for covering the losses. The company was fined $5.6 million, and the adviser to the company was jailed while the three former officials were granted suspended the sentence. Lesotho has been hit by numerous financial scandals, though most of them are not documented. One of the biggest scandals involved water project where a large sum of money was lost.
7. Determine your company’s mode of entry into foreign markets. This should be based upon a serious analysis of your company’s risk-return tradeoff. In your opinion, has your company taken the right approach?
Walmart has used various modes of entry depending on the nation that it wants to set business. First, Walmart selects the country to enter and then determine the appropriate mode of entry. The company has allies of choices for different countries. The company has either been considering to acquire existing players, build an alliance with players that exist on the market or start green field operations either in partnership with other players or alone (Lymbersky, 2011). The company has taken the best approach since it evaluates the market and economy of the country before deciding on the mode of entry to use.
8. Does your company have an exit strategy? Recall that exit strategy are to be determined before entry into the foreign market, rather than after entry.
Walmart strategy to exit in a market is through the buyout. This was evident when the company was exiting from Germany and had to sell off its assets to other companies. This helped the company to venture its business in the United Kingdom that grew rapidly. The company cited the problem in Germany as lack of goods preferred by customers.
9. Critically and objectively evaluate how ethical your company’s global operations are and determine if they are good corporate citizens (i.e., do they have a well-thought-out corporate social responsibility program for the long term?).
Walmart has ensured that there is global ethics in all their outlets as a way of promoting cultural integrity of the company. This includes upholding and development of policies for ethical behavior that is effective for all stake holders. The company also ensures that it helps in promoting farmers as a long-term social responsibility program of the company.
10. What is the corporate mission statement of your target company, assuming it has one? How well do the company’s actions adhere to its stated mission?
The mission statement of Walmart is saving people money so they can live better. The company has saved the money of consumers since it sells its products cheaper than others. However, It is not clear as to whether the company can satisfy the live better.
11. On its strategy formulation, would you categorize your company as a shareholder model or a stakeholder orientation? Why?
Walmart is a shareholder model. The company ensures that the shareholders of the company are aware of its operations and works on increasing their dividends.
12. Is the company a stateless corporation? If not, is the company on its way to becoming a stateless corporation?
The company is a stateless company since it has built alliances with new players in different countries.
13. What type of organizational structure is the company currently using?
Walmart is currently using hierarchical functional organizational structure.
14. Do you think the company may benefit from a hybrid or matrix structure? Why or why not?
Walmart can benefit by using hybrid structure. The structure is a decentralized form that combines both the divisional and functional structure. Walmart would benefit both in the divisional and functional structure of using the structure.
Bitton, M. (2012). “Rethinking the Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement’s Criminal Copyright Enforcement Measures.” The Journal of Criminal Law & Criminology, 102(1):67-117
Lymbersky, C. (2011). “Market Entry Strategies” In Management. Hamburg: Laboratory Press.
Stephen, T. (2014). “Mixed Jurisdiction and the Scottish Legal Tradition: Reconsidering the Concept of Mixture.” .Journal of Civil Law Studies, 7(1), 51-91.
Transparency International (2015). “Corruption Perceptions Index”. Transparency International. Transparency International Indexation.
Walmart (2016). Wal-Mart Stores Inc. Retrieved on 30th September, 2016 from https://www.walmart.com/