At Jhansi, by the station, were parties of famishing emigrants, all with the same dreadful white grimace and glazed eyes, and in the town more starving creatures dragging their suffering frames past the shops鈥攁lmost all closed鈥攐r begging at the doors of the temples and mosques; and the few passers-by hurried on as if they, too, wanted to escape, overpowered by this scene of dread and horror. In 1971, we took our first big step: we corrected my big error of the year before, and started aprofit-sharing plan for all the associates. I guess it's the move we made that I'm proudest of, for a numberof reasons. Profit sharing has pretty much been the carrot that's kept Wal-Mart headed forward. Everyassociate of the company who has been with us at least a year, and who works at least 1,000 hours ayear, is eligible for it. Using a formula based on profit growth, we contribute a percentage of everyeligible associate's wages to his or her plan, which the associate can take when they leave thecompanyeither in cash or Wal-Mart stock. There's nothing that unusual about the structure of the plan. This work was finished while I was at Washington in the spring of 1868, and on the day after I finished it, I commenced The Vicar of Bullhampton, a novel which I wrote for Messrs. Bradbury & Evans. This I completed in November, 1868, and at once began Sir Harry Hotspur of Humblethwaite, a story which I was still writing at the close of the year. I look upon these two years, 1867 and 1868, of which I have given a somewhat confused account in this and the two preceding chapters, as the busiest in my life. I had indeed left the Post Office, but though I had left it I had been employed by it during a considerable portion of the time. I had established the St. Paul鈥檚 Magazine, in reference to which I had read an enormous amount of manuscript, and for which, independently of my novels, I had written articles almost monthly. I had stood for Beverley and had made many speeches. I had also written five novels, and had hunted three times a week during each of the winters. And how happy I was with it all! I had suffered at Beverley, but I had suffered as a part of the work which I was desirous of doing, and I had gained my experience. I had suffered at Washington with that wretched American Postmaster, and with the mosquitoes, not having been able to escape from that capital till July; but all that had added to the activity of my life. I had often groaned over those manuscripts; but I had read them, considering it 鈥?perhaps foolishly 鈥?to be a part of my duty as editor. And though in the quick production of my novels I had always ringing in my ears that terrible condemnation and scorn produced by the great man in Paternoster Row, I was nevertheless proud of having done so much. I always had a pen in my hand. Whether crossing the seas, or fighting with American officials, or tramping about the streets of Beverley, I could do a little, and generally more than a little. I had long since convinced myself that in such work as mine the great secret consisted in acknowledging myself to be bound to rules of labour similar to those which an artisan or a mechanic is forced to obey. A shoemaker when he has finished one pair of shoes does not sit down and contemplate his work in idle satisfaction. 鈥淭here is my pair of shoes finished at last! What a pair of shoes it is!鈥?The shoemaker who so indulged himself would be without wages half his time. It is the same with a professional writer of books. An author may of course want time to study a new subject. He will at any rate assure himself that there is some such good reason why he should pause. He does pause, and will be idle for a month or two while he tells himself how beautiful is that last pair of shoes which he has finished! Having thought much of all this, and having made up my mind that I could be really happy only when I was at work, I had now quite accustomed myself to begin a second pair as soon as the first was out of my hands. We'll bring all of them in to Bentonville to talk to the buyers about what's working for them, and what'snot. Then they meet with the vendors and explain what kinds of complaints we're getting about theirproducts, or what's working well. Together, all these folks formulate their plan for the coming season,and then the department heads go back to their districts and share what they've learned with theircounterparts in neighboring stores. As companies get larger, with a broader following of investors, it becomes awfully tempting to get intothat jet and go up to Detroit or Chicago or New York and speak to the bankers and the people whoown your stock. But since we got our stock jump-started in the beginning, I feel like our time is betterspent with our own people in the stores, rather than off selling the company to outsiders. I don't think anyamount of public relations experts or speeches in New York or Boston means a darn thing to the value ofthe stock over the long haul. I think you get what you're worth. Not that we don't go out of our way tokeep Wall Street up to date on what's going on with the company. For the last few years, in fact, a groupcalled the United Shareholders Association has voted us the number-one company in the U.S. based onour responsiveness to shareholders. 超碰caoporen国产 Please don't keep this letter, but burn it. By then, I was tired of owing money to people I knew, and I was even more tired of begging moneyfrom strangers. I made up my mind for sure that we were going to take Wal-Mart to the stock market. Ilet Mike Smith and Jack Stephens know we wanted to go ahead with the idea, but I also let them knowthey were going to have to compete for our business, just like I've always made everybody else competefor business with us. Also, I let them know I didn't feel comfortable going with a Little Rock firm; Ithought we needed a Wall Street underwriter. Maybe that was right, and maybe it wasn't. I know Mikeand Jack didn't feel too good about it. But I went running off to New York to see what I could find out. Then her bedroom: no bed, only a vast mattress rolled up against the wall, and spread over the floor every night鈥攊t must cover the whole room. I think quite a few companies use charitable giving guidelines as a way to say, in effect, "We gave at theoffice," when it comes to thinking about what overall good the companies should be accomplishing. In myopinion, Wal-Mart is an entirely different sort of enterprise from that and I would argue that our relentlesseffort to improve our business has always been tied to trying to make things better for the folks who liveand work in our communities. We have built a company that is so efficient it has enabled us to save ourcustomers billions of dollars, and whether you buy into the argument or not, we believe it. That in itself isgiving something back, and it has been a cornerstone philosophy of our company.