Years ago Walmart banned the selling of Confederate paraphernalia in their stores. This month Walmart also banned the Mississippi state flag because of its Confederate symbology. Strange move? I think not.
Companies as big as Walmart who have extravagant amounts of cash to spend don’t take risks by ‘chance’, they follow the culture. They are reflections of our values, don’t forget that the owners and investors of Walmart are also people, with values. Companies are providers of services and goods that people want. If a company decides it’s going to provide a service that people don’t want, well, you do the math. The same is true for their spaces, their storefronts and employee’s.
Storefronts provide an atmosphere that nurture comfort, which in turn enriches the shopping experience because at some level that storefront is a reflection of what people want. If you went to IKEA and they had only water ways as isles where you had to get in a paddle boat to browse the products, while it might be a fun novelty for a tourist and make for pretty photos, it sure won’t make for a shopping experience that screams money maker. No, they find out what a particular area values and then reflect those values in the environment. Employees are no different. That’s why Equal Opportunity Employment (EOE) is so important.
If a company opens a location in a city that is 15% Black, 30% Latino/Hispanic, 10% White, 15% Native, and 30% Asian and all of its employees are one race, whether they like it or not that company is making a statement about what it values, not the clientele. That’s a dangerous game and not a very intelligent business strategy.
Companies rarely lead trends but are frequently reflections of trends. Apple Inc. is a great example with the iPhone, which was a response to a market need. People were craving sleek designs with tech in one device that reflected how they felt or wanted to feel. Nike, Lululemon, Google, Tik Tok are all the same thing, cultural reflections.
Food for thought!
Feel free to contact me, a little human contact is always welcome
Ruth Utnage fka jeff 823469 C-601-2
PO Box 888
Monroe, WA. 98272
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