Walmart International is a fast-growing segment of the company’s overall operations, with more than 5,000 stores and 730,000 associates in 26 countries. McMillon previously served as president and CEO of Sam’s Club, an operating segment of Walmart, with sales of more than $46 billion during his tenure.
McMillon gave a view into his company, speaking about culture, values, the company’s dedication to sustainability, to honoring local cultures, supporting small businesses and local farmers. It was a view into the company that might influence the way some people feel and think about Walmart, as evidenced at the end of the session when Fallows asked the audience whether they had a better impression of Walmart after hearing McMillon speak about the company and its values. About 80% of the attendees raised their hands.
McMillon has a long history with Walmart. Most of his 20-year career has been in merchandising in the Walmart US division, primarily in food, apparel, and general merchandise. He’s brought that experience to Walmart International and says that there are common themes across the global organization: the commitment to providing customers with a way to save money, to take care of their families, and to send kids to college. There’s a lot of commonality with the larger organization’s core values, which include: respect for the individual, striving for excellence, and serving the customer, says McMillon. “Our culture is strong, and our culture is global.”