How to Fix Wal-Mart? Ask Its Managers

Store managers from across the countrywho know Wal-Mart's customers besthave a few ideas to get the retailer back on track

H. Lee Scott Jr., chief executive officer of Wal-Mart Stores (WMT), has been tirelessly upbeat in recent quarters even as the retailing giant has floundered through two of the most difficult years in its history. But on Aug. 14, Scott sounded downright glum as he reported financial results for the second quarter. He lowered the company's profit forecast for the rest of the year and made no effort to conceal his disappointment with its performance. "[This] was not what we expected of ourselves," he said (see BusinessWeek.com, 8/14/07, "Wal-Mart's Earnings Warning"), and 8/14/07, "The Implications of Wal-Mart's Warning").

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