Tomorrow, Doug McMillon will become the fifth CEO of Walmart and the youngest to have the job since Sam Walton himself. Before him will be the monumental task of steering the retail giant back on course and into public favor.
An Arkansas native and life-long Walmart employee, McMillon is considered a company insider and Walton family favorite. Analysts have widely approved of his promotion, given his extensive knowledge of the company.
McMillon famously began working for Walmart as a teenager in 1984, in a distribution center position. In 1990, while he was in business school at the University of Tulsa, he rejoined the company as a buyer trainee in sporting goods. He worked his way up and between 1998 and 1999, McMillon was a vice president and general merchandise manager for Sam’s Club stores, after which he was promoted to senior vice president and general merchandise manager for Walmart Stores, Inc. In September 2002, McMillon became executive vice president and chief merchant for Sam’s Club. He was named to lead Sam’s Club in August 2005, a position he held until February 2009, when he became president and CEO of Walmart International. McMillon is now on the Board of Directors for Walmart de Mexico and the U.S.-China Business Council.
McMillon’s biography indicates that he may be the right person to return Walmart to its founding values and build a culture of respect in the company where hard work is again rewarded. Walmart workers will anxiously welcome him, as they wait to see if he continues on the status quo set forth under CEO Mike Duke or takes the company in a new and better direction.