Walmart’s CEO on the shift to centering nature and humanity in relation to the supply chain

June 9, 2022, 4:15 PM UTC
Walmart CEO Doug McMillon.
Courtesy of Walmart

On this week’s episode of Fortune’s Leadership Next podcast, host Alan Murray talks with Doug McMillon, the president and CEO of Walmart, about the economy, Walmart’s shift to becoming a regenerative company, competing with Amazon, and more.

Listen to the episode or read the full transcript below.


Alan MurrayLeadership Next is powered by the folks at Deloitte, who, like me, are super focused on how CEOs can lead in the context of disruption and evolving societal expectations. Welcome to Leadership Next, the podcast about the changing rules of business leadership. 

I’m Alan Murray. My co-host Ellen McGirt is off today. And my guest is the CEO of the largest company in the world. Top of the Fortune 500 for 10 years, top of the Fortune Global 500 for eight years. $600 billion in revenue. 2.3 million employees. That company is Walmart, the CEO is Doug McMillon. And Doug joins me now. Doug, thank you so much.

Doug McMillon  (00:52): Thanks, Alan. Thanks for the invitation.

Murray  (00:54): So you are a Walmart lifer, right? You started as a teenager unloading trucks. How did that happen?

McMillon  (01:01): I needed to make some money to pay for college. My dad said, “Get out there and get a job,” and the highest paying job around Bentonville, Arkansas was at warehouse number two. So I got started and worked for Walmart a couple of different times because I was paying my way through school.

Murray  (01:15): You must have been good at it.

McMillon  (01:17): It was fun. They tend to give the rookies the heavier stuff to lift. That’s one of the things I learned.

Murray  (01:24): So you had an amazing rise there. You ran Sam’s Club for a while. Walmart International for a while. Then became CEO in 2014. And we have so much to talk about—inflation, broken supply chains, your competition with Amazon. But I also want to talk about a really interesting announcement he made last year, that Walmart is going to become a regenerative company. What does that mean? Is it a thing? How are we going to know when you’ve actually achieved your goal of becoming a regenerative company? So we’re going to talk about all of that.

But I’d really like to start with the current economy because you sell more stuff than any other company in the world, and inflation is kind of top of mind for people at the moment. How bad is it? How long is it gonna last?

McMillon  (02:10): It’s gonna last a while, and it definitely feels unusual to us. As you know, we operate around the world. We’re in 24 different countries. So we’ve seen inflation, we’ve seen supply chain challenges before and not all of this was a surprise. But in the U.S. specifically, what happens kind of midway through the first quarter of this year was more dramatic and faster paced than we anticipated. Jewel prices being higher and other challenges emerged.

As a company we had some strong momentum before the pandemic—2018, 2019—but then when the pandemic occurred—2020, 2021—a number of things happened that put some tailwinds behind our business. There were definitely challenges keeping people safe during a pandemic, for example, which was priority one, but there were other things that happened—people staying at home, stimulus dollars in the U.S.—that caused people to spend more money on goods.

So you end up not only on the food side, but on the more discretionary categories general merchandise categories, home decor, lawn and garden, things like that, more demand than than we would have expected by a longshot. We were sold out of puzzles. We sold out of fabric. We sold out of things that we hadn’t sold out of in a long time.

And because that lasted for so long, call it two years, the supply chain gets stretched in ways that it hadn’t been stretched before. The rubber band gets pulled and pulled and pulled. Well, that inevitably leads to inflation. And we hadn’t seen inflation in the U.S. to speak of for a long time. But that acceleration started picking up in 2021 and then has just continued and that’s a reflection of what happened with that strong demand and food in particular. I think it’s going to last a while.

Murray  (03:56): Well, yeah, because stuff keeps happening. You’ve got grain in the port in Odessa they can’t get out because of the war in Ukraine. You’ve got ships in the port in Shanghai they can’t get out because of the COVID lockdown. I mean, it seems to be a succession of things that are causing supply chains to be broken. And when you say last a while, are you talking a couple of years?

McMillon  (04:19): I’m not even going to venture a guess, but it’s definitely going to be longer than this year, but I don’t know how much longer. You know the talk of the recession and all these other factors will ultimately determine what the timing looks like. What we’ve got to do is stay focused on trying to provide the best value that we can for customers and manage our costs appropriately and our inventory levels.

Murray  (04:41): Well, the other thing that goes on, as you know, is that as inflation goes up and workers demand more pay you get a spiral reinforcing that. So what’s happening on the wage front and the labor front? Are you having trouble getting the workers that you need to fill the stores? Are they demanding more pay because of the increases in inflation?

McMillon  (05:00): Wages have gone up, and we’re pleased about that actually. We like to raise wages. In terms of hiring headcount, things really changed kind of September of 2021. And then the COVID wave that was called Omicron, that variance happened in December/January, which created some more folks out on leave. At one point in Walmart U.S., Alan, we had over 300,000 people out on COVID leave in January. And that, as you know, curve was steep and when it came down on the backside, they all came back to work, but we had hired others to try and fill those gaps given that so many people were out. So I think we have moved to the point where finding people and hiring people and retaining people isn’t the issue we’re facing at the moment. But we do now have a higher wage rate. Our average hourly associate in the U.S. now makes over $17, and our average starting wage now in the U.S. is over $15. So productivity improvements become important. We’ve got a lot of work in the company happening related to automation, those things will continue. We’re not seeing the shortage now, but we now have a wage rate that’s higher but baked into our expense base.

Murray  (06:18): What did the pandemic do to your e-commerce?

McMillon  (06:20): It dramatically accelerated it in 2020 and 2021. We probably did three to four years worth of volume in 24 months or less because people were doing pickup orders on our parking lots at the Supercenters, and more people were getting delivery.

Murray  (06:39): What are we talking about now in terms of percentage of your sales?

McMillon  (06:42): It’s about $73 billion out of 560. So that 73 happened a lot faster than we anticipated.

Murray  (06:50): And is it falling back, or do you think it’ll grow from there?

McMillon  (06:53): I think it’ll grow from there. The growth rate especially when you’re up against the like for like comparisons from a year ago look slower. But the behavioral change underneath that I think will persist. People like picking up their grocery orders or their orders from a Supercenter, and they like delivery. You know, the good news for us is that not only have we built out supply through the fulfillment centers for e-commerce, but our stores are really effective distribution points. In the U.S., we’re within 90% of America within 10 miles, like five miles is like 70% of America. So we’re close to people with an assortment of merchandise with terrific low prices and that includes fresh food.

So we can leverage that for pickup and delivery effectively. And when we think about it, they’ll shop however they want to shop, and there’ll be times when e-commerce grows fast. In the stores lately, stores have been coming back, the store traffic picks up, and we try to be fairly indifferent. We’ll serve them however they want.

Murray  (07:51): And you think that’s the future? That it will be a mix of stores and online.

McMillon  (07:56): I do. I think it’s an omni-channel future. It’s a digital future and where the product comes from will be kind of irrelevant to customers, invisible to customers in some cases, we’ll ship it from a store, in some cases that will come from from a fulfillment center.

Murray  (08:10): So you have been making moves into medical clinics, and you’ve got a growing advertising business. How much is Walmart’s business going to move beyond goods?

McMillon  (08:21): One of the interesting things that I’ve learned over the last few years is when you make the switch from being kind of purely analog to being more of a digital company, it unlocks opportunities to grow a lot of other businesses. You can sell a first-party e-commerce assortment, you get to build a marketplace. If you build a marketplace, you get to do fulfillment services. If you have a marketplace with fulfillment services, sales grow, you get to sell ads. These things connect to each other.

And healthcare connects to food and vice versa. And we’ve got a really large pharmacy business in the U.S., and we got healthcare businesses in India and Canada and Mexico and other places. These things center around a family and that family wants value for their grocery business. They want general merchandise items that delight them. They want to be healthier. They want to have financial services that save them money and help them build the wealth of their family. And when you have that digital relationship, you can then tack on these other businesses.

Whereas when I was going to business school we were kind of taught about silos and conglomerates, and GE was a model. Well in a digital world, this feels a lot more connected, and it doesn’t feel like they’re the silos. It actually just feels like you’re designing for a family, for a customer or a member and these other things kind of naturally come together and and result in one experience for them. And that’s what we’re trying to build. It’s not just these individual businesses. It’s how we put them together.

Murray  (09:50): Doug, how is the war in Ukraine affecting your business?

McMillon  (09:53): Um, food inflation is the place that it’s impacted us the most. We don’t have operations in that part of the world. But the supply aspect, as you said, is just one more layer of the supply chain complexity that that we’re dealing with.

Murray  (10:06): Can we talk a little bit about China as well? I know you have a big business there. I know you ship a lot of products from there. I’m hearing more and more CEOs say that because of the COVID lockdown, because of Xi Jinping’s support for Russia, because of tensions over Taiwan for a variety of reasons, they’re trying to pull back from China. Are you trying to pull back from China?

McMillon  (10:30): It’s probably important to start out reminding everybody we’re in 24 countries. China is one of them. Here in the U.S., two-thirds of what we sell here in the U.S. is made or grown or finished here in the United States and the other third comes from China, India, Mexico, Canada. So China is important, particularly for some categories. And we’ll continue sourcing from there.

And our business there has been good. We’ve got over 400 stores and clubs, and we’ve got an investment in an e-commerce company there, We’ve had to pivot with the COVID lockdowns just as we did here in the U.S. during the pandemic to doing more delivery from Sam’s Clubs and Walmart stores because some of the stores weren’t open. And we’ll cope with those things as they happen.

Murray  (11:16): But as a share of your overall business, it will stay the same? Continue to grow? How do you see it?

McMillon  (11:23): It will grow a little bit in terms of revenue, but it’s a relatively low percent of total. So that’s not as much of an issue for us.


Murray  (11:33): But I’m here with Joe Ucuzoglu, the CEO of Deloitte, U.S., and the sponsor of this podcast for all three of its seasons. Thank you for that.

Joe Ucuzoglu  (11:42): Pleasure to be here, Alan.

Murray  (11:44): Joe, business is facing so many challenges these days—the continued pandemic, the battle for talent, supply chain problems, rising inflation, and now on top of all of that war in Europe—how are companies responding to all this disruption?

Ucuzoglu  (11:59): Alan, you’re seeing a remarkable level of optimism in the face of so many varied challenges. And by and large, I’d attribute that to a recognition that this is just the new normal, the constant curveballs that will be thrown at us. But at the same time given how successfully so many of these organizations have navigated through these things over the past couple of years, a growing confidence that we’ll be able to continue to navigate the issues that get thrown at us and grow our businesses. But to do that, we are absolutely seeing a new brand of leadership emerge, grounded in resilience, in agility, in a learning mindset. These are the most important leadership attributes in an environment where we should just expect that change and disruption are going to be at a consistently high level of intensity.

Murray  (12:49): The problems aren’t going away. Right? You have to manage through.

Ucuzoglu  (12:53): I had a CEO say to me recently that if you put together a list of the top 20 risks one week, something big’s gonna hit the next week, and it probably isn’t even on that list. And that’s just a reflection of the number of different phenomena in the world right now and the level of complexity that businesses are managing through.

Murray  (13:11): Joe, thank you.

Ucuzoglu  (13:12): Alan, it’s a real pleasure.


Murray  (13:19): So Doug, let me turn to the question that I’ve really been dying to ask you. Because you made what I think is a significant statement last year that you wanted Walmart to be a regenerative company. I’m not sure most people know what that means. But I’d love to hear what it means to you.

McMillon  (13:37): What we ended up doing, Lee Scott made a really important speech in October of 2005. It’s called Leadership in the 21st century…

We’ve been working on this for a while. The story starts kind of 2004/2005. We were facing criticism as a company. I think it’d be fair to say we were very focused on the customer stakeholder and the associate stakeholder group. And as we were maturing as a company, we didn’t always think about broader issues and the rest of the stakeholders, and we were going through a process of learning. I was part of that. There was a core group that was meeting with critics, reading books related to the environment, reading books related to social issues, having experiences, let’s say, that were unusual for us at that time. And our thought process was well, we’re maturing as a company. We’re facing criticism rather than trying to defend ourselves, let’s look in the mirror, and have some of the people that can be most harsh about us tell us what they think and then try to make it a better company.

Murray  (13:51): I remember.

McMillon  (13:52): …and it got into wages and benefits as well as things related to the environment and sustainability. Right about that time, Alan, Hurricane Katrina happened in New Orleans, and the city flooded and people were struggling, and the government was slower to react. We’re all watching this on TV. It’s a Labor Day weekend. I’m at Sam’s Club, and we’re shipping water and kind of doing the things we would typically do. And Lee had us on a conference call and as we’re watching it all unfold, he said, “Listen, this is a different situation. It’s dire. They need help. We can help. I want to unleash you all to send people, to send money, and to send merchandise and do everything you can to help New Orleans, and we’ll worry about what it costs later. And if it dings the quarter we’ll explain to people why we had a bad quarter. Don’t worry about that.”

So we had people from all over the country go to New Orleans to serve others. We had vice presidents landing emergency helicopters in parking lots. We had officers doing resuscitation on people in the lobbies of Walmart stores. It was just an incredible moment to watch what our people did. Lee then captured that moment and said: How would you like to feel the pride you feel right now after Katrina every day? And let’s talk about sustainability, both social and environmentally. And then he made the speech.

So he set us on a path, and that path as you play through to 2020, when we set the objective of becoming regenerative, basically means we’ve done a lot of good work—we’re now eliminating 80% of our waste from landfills and incineration with 36% supply by renewable energy. We sell more sustainable products. We’ve got lots of things we’ve accomplished to get a project gigaton underway right now with about 4,500 suppliers, where we’ve already had them report they’d saved over 500 billion metric tons of greenhouse gases—but it’s not enough. And what we want to do is actually help strengthen the environment. Becoming regenerative means that you take nature and you take humanity and you put it even more into the center of your decision making as it relates to the supply chain. What more can we do to have a place-based approach to know that everything about that item, the raw materials, the way people that make it are treated, is actually strengthening outcomes? And it started with kind of a symbolic commitment, which is big, to protect 50 million acres of land and a million miles of ocean by 2030.

So we made that announcement in 2020. We’re going to protect those things and ensure that they’re safe to that tune at a minimum over the next 10 years. You can think of it as a systemic approach, a holistic systemic approach to strengthening nature at the point that the supply chain happens.

Murray  (17:36): And this as I understand it, this is a voluntary effort right now, but they’re making big progress. Will the day come when you say to suppliers, hey, if you want to sell at Walmart, you have to be on a path to net zero 2050 or whatever the appropriate…

McMillon  (17:50): It hasn’t been our experience that we will need to. The suppliers care about these issues, too. They’re seeing the same things that we’re seeing and what we’ve done instead of some sort of negative or mandatory approach is to make it part of the spirit of competition. So if if you come in with an item, and I come in with an item, and they’re the same kind of in almost every way, but you’ve got a sustainability aspect, you’ve reduced packaging, you’ve thought about carbon in a different way. You can provide to us some evidence that your product is more sustainable, you’re gonna win, because that’s one of the factors we’re looking at.

Murray  (18:26): As you know, there are a lot of skeptics out there about this stuff. There’s one group of skeptics that say, this talk, you know, it’s public relations it’s not really affecting your actions. How often does this goal of being a regenerative company affect real decisions made?

McMillon  (18:42): Every day because the merchants think that way. So, you know, again, this is a goal. We want to become regenerative. We want to do more than just reduce the amount of carbon in our supply chain. For example, we want to look for ways to add back, in the way we talk about this with our merchants, we incentivize the associates that work at Walmart, we educate them, it becomes top of mind. And so, you know, just every day, you could walk around your office with me, and we could stop a merchant and say talk to us about what it means to be regenerative. Tell us about the work you’re doing related to sustainability. And they can tell you stories about item by item, supplier by supplier what they’re doing.

So I understand criticism. I mean people are going to criticize and when you set a goal, people will try to pick it apart. The opposite approach would be don’t set a goal. But then you don’t have this internal momentum towards something that’s actually really helpful. If Lee hadn’t done what he did in 2005, we wouldn’t have eliminated 80% of our waste from landfills and incineration by 2022.

So, you know, I hope society lets us set some big goals like being supplied by renewable energy. And when we fall short on these individual metrics, you can see in our ESG reporting where we fell short, like we’re really transparent about we made it here, we’re short here, here’s what we learned, here’s how we’re recalibrating. And I think that’s a good way to approach this thing.

Murray  (20:15): Is it a good idea for the SEC to get involved in this? They’ve proposed, as you know, a 500-page notice of rulemaking to get more standardized metrics around sustainability?

McMillon  (20:29): I think that’s important. I just hope it’s common sense and, you know, we don’t overreach and create too much bureaucracy. But public companies have to tell the truth and report clearly and be transparent. Just try to be really smart about the standards that we set up so that we don’t have negative, unintended consequences.

Murray  (20:48): I think what you’re doing is really impressive, but again, you know, there are lots of people on the other side who say, hey, stop talking about sustainability. You know, your job is to make money for your shareholders and criticize a lot of talk about the environment etc, as the work of a bunch of woke CEOs who are trying to get public relations gains or score points with politicians.

McMillon  (21:13): I think it all boils down to timeframe. Yes, we are here to provide a return for shareholders. The best way to provide a return for shareholders over time is if you have strong communities, associates that are well compensated and happy with their jobs and excited about their futures. A planet that works.

I mean, even looking at what’s happening today around the world, it’s just more challenging from an environmental point of view, and that impacts our business and impacts our business in a negative way. We have to have a strong planet. We want to invest in communities. And as we do that, shareholders benefit over time.

And there are moments, it’s interesting to me to think about it, you know, kind of year by year and quarter by quarter, there are moments where as we’re looking at the stakeholders, we make a decision to, say, invest in wages and associates in an aggressive way. And that impacts earnings, and we get downward pressure on the share price. But over time, if those associates are enthusiastic about their work, we get more sales, customers are more happy, and we generate a better return. But if you take a snapshot of a decision, you can say, well, you’re out of balance, you’re out of balance, you’re serving customers too aggressively by lowering prices, or you’re worried about the planet too much and you should just be worried about customers and profit. But if you look at the video, rather than the snapshot stills, what you see is the video tells a story about balancing multiple stakeholders, and that, again, is the best strategy for shareholders.

Murray  (22:36): So Doug, you were leading the Business Roundtable as it was implementing this redefinition of the purpose of corporation that said it’s not just about shareholders, it’s about a group of stakeholders, employees, customers, the communities they live in, the planet. You know, there’s there’s been a fair amount of pushback against that and in recent months, some of it coming from your your colleagues among Fortune 500 CEOs. Why the pushback? What’s the issue?

McMillon  (23:05): I think that’s interesting when when that came up originally, Jamie Dimon was the chairman of Business Roundtable, and I was on the board, and someone pointed out that the BRT statement basically said, all we care about is profit and shareholders. And we looked at that when it was raised and said, that’s not how we think or how we behave and so we probably should look at refreshing the statement. Alex Gorsky led that work and did a fantastic job.

And when the statement was complete, I looked at it, and it felt like a no brainer. I was very surprised, actually, that it was controversial because the companies that I can see and the one I work at, do think about multiple stakeholders. Again, because if you serve the the multiple stakeholders, you actually are benefiting shareholders over time. I don’t see those things as being mutually exclusive. I just think it’s a time horizon question. And companies like ours should have a long-term view. We care about short term, we manage the short term, but we have a long-term view.

And so when it came out as controversial, that was a surprise to me. But you know, I think if you look at what companies are actually doing, we are trying to balance all of those things and live that out and be systems thinkers and, and it’s, I think, healthier. I think businesses need to demonstrate, especially larger businesses that people presume have bad intentions or are greedy or to short term or whatever, you can prove your actions as well as your words that you’re a group of people with good intentions, trying to do the right thing and build a strong business. That’s going to make a company that’s more valuable, and that’s what we’re trying to do.

Murray  (24:45): How much of it comes from the fact that some of these things we’re talking about, like addressing the problems of the planet or dealing with the problems of communities should really be dealt with by governments, but in many cases, they aren’t being dealt with effectively by governments?

McMillon  (25:01): Nature abhors a vacuum. Go government, we need government to be great locally, at the state level, nationally, government does have a role and business can’t fill it all and doesn’t want to fill it all. We got plenty of stuff to do. But when something happens, and it touches the core values of the company or our stakeholders, associates, customers put pressure on us to say or do something. We step back and think about our values. We think about what it means to the brand and the business. We think about what our stakeholders think. We think about our real ability to make a difference with actions or words. And in some cases, we’ve said and done things and in some cases we haven’t, because we kind of worked through those considerations and decided that we shouldn’t. But in the end, over time, we’re trying to strengthen all the stakeholders that you mentioned.

Murray  (25:51): You’ve been part of overseeing a massive technology revolution. You are overseeing a revolution in the company’s purpose. To listen to you talk about what it means to be a regenerative company, that’s a pretty big change. What do you think it would be like for Sam Walton, to see what the company, what the company is today? I mean, wouldn’t you love to have that conversation? It’s a very different world than the world that he built the company.

McMillon  (26:18): Yeah, I think about that, multiple times a week. I’m still in his office, and so you know, when I’m in town, and I walk in there in the morning, I recognize where I am and for us at Walmart, that’s like, you know, that’s a special place. Maybe I’ll get to heaven someday, and I’ll get to have that conversation with him. But the closest I’ve gotten is David Glass. You know, David was the CEO after Sam and he worked with Sam very closely and unfortunately we lost David in 2020. He passed away, but he would laugh at me. Having this conversation you and I are having and say it feels so complex. I don’t know how you do it. I understand you need to, but wow, it’s a lot. Are you sure?

Murray  (27:05): And what does it mean about the nature of leadership itself? How do you think leading is different today than it was even in Jack Welch’s time? I was just reading, you know, David Gelles has a new book out on Jack Welch and it’s kind of a reminder, even 20 years ago, and we at Fortune called Welch the manager of the century, but man, the way he led his company was so different than the way you’re talking about leading Walmart today. How do you describe that change?

McMillon  (27:36): Well, I wasn’t, you know, leading a company in the ’80s so I want to be fair to how difficult that must have been at the time. But, if you look at what we’re doing today, not just me, but but the other CEOs that I talk to frequently, the pressure to be a student, that requirement I should say, to learn constantly and to apply that learning through large numbers of people, it’s even more important. Like what I what I’ve experienced in the last few years is kind of incredible to me, it’s a blessing, to be in the position to get to see it all. Also a lot of pressure to figure out based on what’s coming next, how does AI apply? What is the immersive internet going to be? What is internet 3.0 and how does that relate to us? What should we be doing with blockchain? What’s that mean from a cryptocurrency point of view for Walmart? It’s a pretty long list of new things, newer things that are emerging, and making the choices together with our leadership team and our board around where do you lean in. Where do you not? Where do you keep eyes on but maybe not act? Where do you invest? Where do you draw the line? It’s a very fluid environment.

You know, I’m getting exposed to people, I’m reading, I’m giving things to the team, I’m delegating more. It takes a really capable and deep team to do this. You cannot run Walmart. And there I think there are a lot of companies that I could say that about, but you can lead them and you lead them by in some ways, being out front, and being that student modeling that behavior, encouraging the team to apply it so that the organization moves faster. And we’re constantly trying to figure out how to move this thing, this big business faster because if the world is moving faster than you are, you’re losing ground. So it better you better have a lot of energy.

Murray  (29:29): So it’s less about telling people what to do and much more about inspiring them, encouraging them, giving them some some clear directions and and giving them a clear purpose.

McMillon  (29:41): And exposure. Like let him see what you see. I’m a big fan of Stanley McChrystal’s empowered execution, but empowered execution because you’re all on the same page, you’ve got a shared consciousness. So I think in my role, I’m doing a lot of work to create shared consciousness for about 500 officers so that they can then act in an empowered way to make stuff happen knowing we have a common purpose. Sam Walton gave us that. We’ve got four core values. Here’s our strategy and why. Here’s what’s next. I’ll do things like bring in guest speakers. Jamie Dimon was here a couple of weeks ago. Satya [Nadella] has been here. Sundar [Pichai] has been here. Marc Benioff has been here. Ginni Rometty, and Bob Iger and I’ll do what you’re doing. I’ll take 30-45 minutes and I’ll interview them and open up the auditorium for questions from others to try and create shared consciousness and shared awareness about what’s happening in the world.

Murray  (30:40): Going back to this regenerative company idea, how does that fit into into that broader leadership approach?

McMillon  (30:46): Yeah, same thing that. We’re not scientists. So if you’re going to get into row crop production, you better have Iowa State, you better have some universities, you better have thought leaders, suppliers who have expertise, convene. You know, one of the great powers that Walmart has is that of convening. We can get people together. They will take our phone call, and if you can get the right diverse group together to focus on an issue, you get better outcomes. And so just as we do with a digital transformation, we’re doing that with regeneration.

Murray  (31:19): And so what would you like people to say about Walmart, you have a purpose. You have a lot of goals, but what would you like them to say about the company?

McMillon  (31:27): Pick a number. Five years time. We want a mom or a dad to say, yeah, not only does Walmart save me money on the things I want and need, products and services, but they’ve helped my family be healthier, healthier because of their financial services product, and I can see them investing in in my community. In the U.S. alone, Walmart associates volunteer about 1,000 hours a day, and volunteerism, and the company supports them in doing that. And I know they’re doing good work for the planet. So when I imagine that it’s like a testimonial from parents that have a few kids, and they know that we’re helping them do more than just save money.

Murray  (32:07): Wow, great aspiration. Doug McMillon, thanks so much for taking the time to talk about what you’re up to. I can’t imagine how busy you are these days, but really appreciate it.

McMillon  (32:34): Thanks, Alan. Good to see you.

Alan MurrayLeadership Next is edited by Nicole Vergalla, written by me, Alan Murray, along with my amazing colleagues, Ellen McGirt and Megan Arnold. Our theme is by Jason Snell. Executive producers are Mason Cohn and Megan Arnold. Leadership Next is a production of Fortune MediaLeadership Next episodes are produced by Fortune‘s editorial team.

The views and opinions expressed by podcast speakers and guests are solely their own and do not reflect the opinions of Deloitte or its personnel. Nor does Deloitte advocate or endorse any individuals or entities featured on the episodes.

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