A deep flush came over Maggie鈥檚 face, and she couldn鈥檛 speak. Stephen saw this. He sat down again, taking her hand in his, and looking at her with passionate entreaty. Earlier on, there were fewer of us. Jackie Lancaster, our first floor manager inNewport,Arkansas. InezThreet, Ruby Turner, Wanda Wiseman, Ruth Kellermy first four associates when we opened Walton'sFive and Dime in Bentonville onAugust 1, 1951. What would we have done without those earlymanagers Most of them risked so much by leaving good jobs with much larger variety chains to join upwith a one-horse outfit run by an overactive dreamer down in Bentonvillepeople like Clarence Leis,Willard Walker, Charlie Baum, Ron Loveless, Bob Bogle, Claude Harris, Ferold Arend, Charlie Cate,Al Miles, Thomas Jefferson, Gary Reinboth. There was Bob Thornton, Darwin Smith, Jim Henry, PhilGreen, and Don Whitaker. And I can't forget Ray Thomas, Jim Dismore, Jim Elliott, or John Hawks. This saturation strategy had all sorts of benefits beyond control and distribution. From the verybeginning, we never believed in spending much money on advertising, and saturation helped us to save afortune in that department. When you move like we did from town to town in these mostly rural areas,word of mouth gets your message out to customers pretty quickly without much advertising. When wehad seventy-five stores in Arkansas, seventy-five in Missouri, eighty in Oklahoma, whatever, peopleknew who we were, and everybody except the merchants who weren't discounting looked forward toour coming to their town. By doing it this way, we usually could get by with distributing just oneadvertising circular a month instead of running a whole lot of newspaper advertising. We've never beenbig advertisers, and, relative to our size today, we still aren't. Just like today, we became our owncompetitors. In the Springfield, Missouri, area, for example, we had forty stores within 100 miles. WhenKmart finally came in there with three stores, they had a rough time going up against our kind of strength. 日本高清视频在线网站 日本黄色视频 日本**视频 日本**色在线视频 HELEN WALTON: Chapter 13 Meeting the Competition At our size today, there's all sorts of pressure to regiment and standardize and operate as a centrallydriven chain, where everything is decided on high and passed down to the stores. In a system like that,there's absolutely no room for creativity, no place for the maverick merchant that I was in the early daysat Ben Franklin, no call for the entrepreneur or the promoter. Man, I'd hate to work at a place like that,and I worry every single day about Wal-Mart becoming that way. I stay on these guys around here allthe time about it. Of course, all those vendors and suppliers would love to see us get that way. It wouldmake their jobs a lot simpler for sure. If anybody at Wal-Mart thinks we as a company are immune toBig Disease, I wish they'd just pack up and leave right now because it's always something we'll have toworry about. "Back when I was general merchandise manager, we didn't have much computer support. So everyFriday morning for six years, I would take my columnar pad with all the numbers on it into Sam's officefor him to review. Every morning that I went through those numbers, Sam would jot them down on hisown pad and work through all the calculations himself. I never felt that he didn't trust my judgment. Hejust felt that it was his function to make sure of everything. Sometimes he would work the numbers a littledifferently from the way I had, or argue with some of my conclusions, which kept me on my toes. Thepoint is: I always knew I could not just go in there and lay a sheet of numbers in front of him and expecthim to just accept it.