Sam Walton, Made in America

June 3, 2008

Made in America is an autobiography of sorts, written by Sam Walton with John Huey. Sam Walton is better known as the founder of Walmart. These days, just saying “Walmart” can arouse a wide array of emotions . Some people love the low prices and expansive selection, while others are outraged at supposed mistreatment of employees, while others call Walmart the “Mom and Pop store killer”. I’m not here to discuss those issues right now, but rather share little nuggets of knowledge throughout this book. The book is chalk full of important lessons about business, marketing, leadership, augmented with endless personal anecdotes. While I am reading this book, I’ll just try to share what I found to be important to me, and try and present it in a way where others can glean importance from it as well.

[My mom] told me I should always try to be the best I could at whatever I took on. -Sam Walton

This is a great mindset to have, especially when in the business of… well business. This drive that Sam Walton had is one of the largest reasons why Walmart is where it is today. He was not satisfied at just having an OK store that had OK sales. He wanted a great store with great sales, always looking for ways to improve his store, instead of idly waiting for sales to magically mushroom. I interpret this motivation as inner self will to always be improving, not greed. I hope other will see this the same way. If he was after money, he would not have lived the way he did and still does. I will be excitedly writing about this topic in upcoming posts.

I’ve always held the bar pretty high for myself; I’ve set extremely high personal goals. – Sam Walton

It is my opinion that a growing number of people are simply not applying themselves in their classes, or careers. Some are happy with the mediocre, which in a way is sad, however, we have God given talents that should not be wasted. I would encourage all of you to find an area that is of interest to all of you, and just go for it. If you have been thinking of creating a website for awhile, get educated, and go do it. If you have been mulling over the thought of learning a new skill related to your field, more times than not, the only thing stopping you is you. Whatever you desire to do, develop the will power to do it, and get excited about it, and set goals.

The Bottom Line:

  • Try and set lofty goals for yourself, and learn to challenge yourself.
  • Try your best in all areas of your life, do not develop a passive nature.
  • ” Failure is not the worst thing in the world. The very worst is not to try.”- Anonymous