Walmarts 2013 Global Responsibility Report
- Recognized as largest on-site green power generator in the U.S.: In 2012, the EPA Green Power Partnership recognized Walmart as the largest on-site green power generator in the U.S., with more than 200 solar projects across the country. In addition, the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) cited Walmart as the most-installed onsite solar capacity in the U.S. Last year alone, Walmart installed 100 rooftop solar installations in locations such as Arizona, California, and Ohio, as well a 1-MW utility-scale wind turbine at a distribution center in California. Announced last week, the new commitments are to scale renewables by producing or procuring 7 billion kWh of renewable energy annually and to reduce the total kWh per square foot energy intensity required to power our buildings by 20 percent by 2020.
- Accelerated global transition to renewable energy and improved energy efficiency: Renewable energy now provides 21 percent of Walmart’s electricity globally. Since our last report Walmart Mexico started construction on two utility-scale wind projects and two micro-hydro projects, while Walmart India installed its first solar water heaters and Walmart Chile launched its first large-scale renewable RFP to begin the process of introducing renewable projects to local operations.
- Took on, and beat, GHG emissions: Since the last report, Walmart fulfilled a pledge made in 2009 to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 20 percent by 2012, a year ahead of schedule. Our new renewable energy and efficiency commitments will avoid 3 million metric tons of CO2e, the equivalent of taking 625,000 cars off the road, in effect halting the growth of GHG emissions from the company’s largest GHG source – energy used to power buildings – by 2020, even though we still anticipate growth in stores and sales. We are also on track to eliminate 20 million metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions from our global supply chain by the end of 2015.
- Drove fewer miles while delivering more product: In 2012, we delivered almost 297 million more cases while driving almost 11 million fewer miles, increasing fleet efficiency by 10 percent to in 2012 alone and 80 percent since 2005. Since every mile not driven equals fuel savings, our efficiency saved almost $130 million and avoided emitting almost 103,000 metric tons of CO2 avoided, about the equivalent of taking 20,000 cars off the road.
- Committed to scaling the Sustainability Index and helped to launch TSC in China: Walmart began the work of launching and integrating the Sustainability Index, exceeding the goal to launch the Index with buyers and suppliers in 100 categories last year. Today, the Index is being used in 190 categories and we will continue to roll it out across other categories this year. In October 2012, Walmart announced a series of new commitments to make our supply chain more sustainable. Among them was a commitment to, by 2017, buy 70 percent of the goods sold in U.S. Walmart and Sam’s Club locations from suppliers who use the Index to evaluate their products. Another commitment was to use the Index to influence the design of U.S. private-brand products beginning this year; and tying Walmart U.S. buyers’ evaluations to sustainability objectives. The Walmart Foundation also provided a $2 million grant to help support the launch of The Sustainability Consortium (TSC) in China, to help provide training and develop partnerships that will build capacity for TSC’s tools to improve sustainability.
- Met goals to source seafood sustainably in the U.S.: Walmart and Sam’s Club locations in the U.S. met their sustainable seafood goal requiring all fresh and frozen, farmed and wild seafood products sold to be certified as sustainable by a third-party or require uncertified fisheries to develop plans to achieve certification and report progress.
- Reduced global plastic shopping bag waste: In 2012, we exceeded our target to reduce our global plastic shopping bag waste by reducing bag waste globally by 38.1 percent, more than the targeted 33 percent, and did so ahead of schedule. In fact, in Brazil alone we reduced plastic bag consumption by more than 50 percent thanks to customer programs and support for reusable bags.
- Optimizing packaging to meet our goals: Working with our suppliers, manufacturers and other key stakeholders, we recently met our goal to reduce packaging by 5 percent by 2013, months ahead of schedule. By focusing on the GHG emissions that result from each unit of packaging we use, our suppliers have partnered with us to reduce the overall GHG impact of our packaging by an average of 9.8 percent in our Walmart U.S. stores, 9.1 percent in our Sam’s Clubs in the U.S. and 16 percent in our Walmart Canada stores.
Marketing matters: from IBM to Kyndryl
Prior to joining Kyndryl as Chief Marketing Officer, Maria had a 25-year career at IBM, most recently as the tech giant’s CMO where she oversaw all marketing professionals and activities across North America, Canada and Latin America. She has held senior global marketing positions in a variety of disciplines and business units across IBM, most notably strategic initiatives in Smarter Cities and Watson Customer Engagement, as well as leading teams in services, business analytics, and mobile and industry solutions. She is known for her work with teams to leverage data, analytics and cloud technologies to build deeper engagements with customers and partners.
With a passion for marketing, business and people, and a recognized expert in data-driven marketing and brand engagement, Maria talks to Business Chief about her new role, her leadership style and what success means to her.
You've recently moved from IBM to Kyndryl, joining as CMO. Tell us about this exciting new role?
I’m Chief Marketing Officer for Kyndryl, the independent company that will be created following the separation from IBM of its Managed Infrastructure Services business, expected to occur by the end of 2021. My role is to plan, develop, and execute Kyndryl's marketing and advertising initiatives. This includes building a company culture and brand identity on which we base our marketing and advertising strategy.
We have an amazing opportunity ahead at Kyndryl to create a company brand that will stand apart in the market by leading with our people first. Once we are an independent company, each Kyndryl employee will advance the vital systems that power human progress. Our people are devoted, restless, empathetic, and anticipatory – key qualities needed as we build on existing customer relationships and cultivate new ones. Our people are at the heart of this business and I am deeply hopeful and excited for our future.
What experiences have helped prepare you for this new opportunity?
I’ve had a very rich and diverse career history at IBM that has lasted 25+ years. I started out in sales but landed explored opportunities at IBM in different roles, business units, geographies, and functions. Marketing and business are my passions and I landed on Marketing because it allowed me to utilize both my left and right brain, bringing together art and science. In college, I was no tonly a business major, but an art major. I love marketing because I can leverage my extensive knowledge of business, while also being able to think openly and creatively.
The opportunities I was given during my time at IBM and my natural curiosity have led me to the path I’m on now and there’s no better next career step than a once-in-a-lifetime-opportunity to help launch a company. The core of my role at Kyndryl is to create a culture centered on our people and growing up in my career at IBM has allowed me to see first-hand how to prioritize people and ensure they are at the heart of progress in everything Kyndryl will do.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I believe that people aren't your greatest assets, they are your only assets. My platform and background for leadership has always been grounded in authenticity to who I am and centered on diversity and inclusion. I immigrated to the US from Chile when I was 10 years old and so I know the power and beauty that comes from leaning into what makes you different from other people, and that's what I want every person in my marketing organization to feel – the value in bringing their most authentic self to work every day. The way our employees feel when they show up for themselves authentically is how they will also show up for our customers, and strong relationships drive growth.
I think this is especially true in light of a world forever changed by the pandemic. Living through such an unprecedented time has reinforced that we are all humans. We can't lead or care for one another without empathy and I think leaders everywhere have been reminded of this.
What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?
When I was growing up as an immigrant in North Carolina, I often wanted to be just like everyone else. But my mother always told me: Be unique, be memorable – you have an authentic view and experience of the world that no one else will ever have, so don't try to be anyone else but you.
What does success look like to you?
I think the concept of success is multi-faceted. From a career perspective, being in a job where you're respected and appreciated, and where you can see how your contributions are providing value by motivating your teams to be better – that's success! From a personal perspective, there is no greater accomplishment than investing in the next generation. I love mentoring younger professionals – they are the future. I want my legacy as a leader to include providing value in work culture, but also in leaving a personal impact on the lives of professionals who will carry the workforce forward. Finding a position in life with a job and company that offers me a chance at all of that is what success looks like to me.
What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?
I've always been a naturally curious person and it's easy for me to over-commit to projects that pique my interest. I've learned over years of practice how to manage that, so to my younger self I’d say… prioritize the things that are most important, and then become amazing at those things.