Strategic Management And Entrepreneurship

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Strategic Management and Entrepreneurship This chapter will provide you with an understanding of strategic management and entrepreneurship, with emphasis on the process of strategy formulation and implementation.

The chapter opener, "Does Wal-Mart Have a Master Plan?" would unboubtely provoke a lot of thought for the average American. However, if one looked back at the humble beginnings of Wal-Mart stores, the question would be answered with a resounding YES. Wal-Mart has grown from a small town store to over 1600 stores and Mega Centers. The company has expanded its operations internationally to Puerto Rico, Mexico, Canada, Brazil, Argentina, China, and Indonesia. The chain reported net sales for the year ended January 31, 1997 as $104.4 billion. Sam's Clubs reported earnings for the same period of $19.6 billion.

Sam Walton was focused and had a retail strategy that is unmatched by any U.S. Corporation. Even the computer giant IBM could not reach the $100 billion mark (and they have had more years experience, and operate in more countries that any other firm in the world.

In the retail industry, Walmart surpassed K-Mart, Target, and Sears stores to take the number one spot. The main strategy is consistently low prices and high customer service. Wal-Mart is also a good corporate citizen making sure that they sell environmentally safe products, contribute to the commumity, focus on training, control inventory, and locate in areas where they receive high visibility and find the opportunity for growth.

A strategy is a comprehensive plan of action that sets critical direction and guides the allocation of resources to achieve longterm organizational objectives. There are five steps in the Strategic Planning Process, which include: Identify organizational purpose and objectives. Questions to ask here are, "what business are we in?" and "where do we want to be in the future.