Retail Industry, Compliance, Globalization, Culture, Corporate Conscience, and Corporate Social Responsibility.


This paper covers Retail Management, globalization, ethical and legal issues related to the Retail Industry. Specifically the paper looks to a connection between a company’s emphases on culture as a mechanism to assure compliance. This paper looks at some relatively recent current events by Retail Industry giants like Walmart and Kroger. Leveraging secondary research these events will be discussed. In addition this paper will leverage primary and secondary research to help highlight a company’s culture as a very effective mechanism to prevent compliance failures. The primary research included in this paper was conducted via anonymous phone interviews. Interviewees were assured of anonymity, and provided the aggregated anonymous research results for their efforts. Interviewees were asked a script of questions that range from Yes/No questions, to scale questions and open ended questions. The interviewees included in the survey were confirmed to be seniorlevel human resource professionals with a focus on compliance. This primary research is not positioned to be statistically representative of all global retailers. This primary research does reflect a perceptive given the reach and size of the selected companies that participated. The primary research in support of this paper is limited to only a select few respondents. This is likely due to the nature of the compliance function in companies erring on the side of caution. Global retailers have many, large force

Full Text : PDF

  1. Dunne, P. (2008).  Retailing. (6th Edition). Thomson South-Western.
  2. Silveira, P., Rodriguez, C., Birukou, A., Casati, F., Daniel, F., D'Andrea, V., Worledge & C., Zouhair, T. (2012), Aiding Compliance Governance in Service-Based Business Processes, IGI Global.
  3. McGreevy, M.  Reuters.  (2008) “AMR Research Finds Spending on Governance, Risk Management, and Compliance Will Exceed...” Retrieved on January 19, 2014, from 
  4. Shelton, D. (2003). “The Impact of Economic Globalization on Compliance.” Economic Globalization and Compliance with International Environmental Agreements. Retrieved on January 20, 2014, from
  6. Barstow, D.  (2012, April 21) “Vast Mexico Bribery Case Hushed Up by Walmart after Top-Level Struggle.” The New York Times.  Retrieved on January 20, 2014, from 
  7. Green, F.  (2006, October 17) “Ralphs to pay $70 million in settlement.” Union Tribune San Diego.  Retrieved on January 22, 2014, from
  9. “Global Powers of Retailing 2013 Retail Beyond.” Deloitte.  (2013) Retrieved on January 28, 2014, from 
  11. “The True Cost of Compliance – A Benchmark Study of Multinational Corporations.” Ponemon Institute. (2011) Retrieved on January 30, 2014, from 
  13. Bernstein, S., Kipp, B. “Addendum to State of Compliance 2013 Survey Retail and Consumer Industry Report.” PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP. (2013) Retrieved on January 30, 2014, from 
  14. 2013.  
  15. Walmart Corporate website.  Retrieved on January 17, 2014, from 
  17. Staff Writer. (2013, March 27) “Walmart's Bribery Mess in Mexico Could Mean Profit Loss, Company Says.” Fox News Latino.  Retrieved on February 01, 2014, from 
  19. Feeley, J.  (2013, January 29) “Wal-Mart Accused of Using Mexican Governor to Push Bribes.” Bloomberg.  Retrieved on January 12, 2014, from 
  21. Friedman, M.  (2013, December 9) “Wal-Mart's Costs Connected To Mexican Bribery Case Reach $400M.” Arkansas Business.  Retrieved on January 17, 2014, from
  23. Brown, A.  (2012, April 23). “Mexican Bribery Scandal Could Cost Wal-Mart $4.5 Billion; Shares Down 4.7%.” Forbes.  Retrieved on February 3, 2014, from
  25. Mrozek, T.  (2006, November 14). “Ralph’s Grocery Company Pays $70 Million to Resolve Criminal Case of Rehiring Workers During Labor Dispute.” U.S. Department of Justice.  Retrieved on February 1, 2014, from
  27. Vlasic, B.  (2012, December 26). “Toyota Agrees to Settle Lawsuit Tied to Accelerations.” The New York Times.  Retrieved on December 26, 2013, from
  29. Parker, E.  (2011, March 15). “Ethisphere Announces 2011 World’s Most Ethical Companies.” Business Wire.  Retrieved on February 5, 2014, from
  31. “World’s Most Ethical (WME) Companies - 2013.” Ethisphere Institute..  (2013) Retrieved on February 6, 2014, from

Primary Research Questions
1)    Please describe your role.
2)    Does your company have a whistle blowing policy?  Can you describe it?
3)    Does your company have any training around ethics?
a.    Web Based Training  Y/N
b.    Onsite Y/N
c.    Distributed material Y/N
4)    If you do have ethics training, what is the frequency of the training?
5)    Are you aware of the Wal-Mart Mexico bribery scandal?    Yes/No
6)    What were your reactions to the scandal in question, if any?
7)    In your opinion, what allowed the Wal-Mart Mexico scandal to happen?
8)    Before the scandal was publicized, how confident were you in your company’s controls to prevent a similar scandal?  (Scale of 1 – 10, with 1 being least confident and 10 being most confident.)
9)    After the scandal was publicized, how confident were you in your company’s controls to prevent a similar scandal?  (Scale of 1 – 10, with 1 being least confident and 10 being most confident.)
a.    Why?
10)    Although the scandal was with Wal-Mart, do you feel your company has felt increased pressure from regulators?
11)    What do you think is the biggest risk in your company to mitigate, in order to prevent a similar scenario from taking place?
12)    Any other comments you may have around this topic of ethics in the retail industry and your company?
13)    What additional steps would you recommend for your company and other retailers to implement in order to assure avoidance of the above scenario (Wal-Mart Mexico bribery)?