ICA/E revolved around a WalMart case today. How did it grow to dominate its much larger rivals such as K-Mart? Why and how could it diversify to include Sam’s Club? Why and how could it diversify into other countries? At what price to the small, rural town comes WalMart’s strategy? The case was set in 1986. I always find these retroactive cases interesting because then we have the opportunity to see how things played out with the benefit of 20/20 hindsight.
What really made the discussion personal for me is that Ralf chose Janet as the name of a hypothetical WalMart customer in Arkansas. I have an Aunt Janet who lives in Arkansas and is probably a WalMart customer. Ralf usually chooses Frieda or Greta for hypotheitcal names so good on him for proposing an accurate Arkansan name!
Since much of today’s class was devoted to discussion instead of lecture, there weren’t too many Ralfisms. As always, though, there were a few:
- Let’s bring it on, duuuuuude!
- At this stage in your career it’s important that you show leadership . . . and hold hands.
- Coffee breaks are so 70s anyway.
- I’d rather eat myself instead of letting someone else eat me.
The soup du jour today was cauliflower. Off to Finance!