My father told me something about 5 years ago when he heard the news that Walmart was coming to a local town. He lives in a rural community who up to that point did not have a Walmart. At the time there where several dozen grocery stores and small convenience stores. In those short 5 years since Walmart opened it’s doors the number of grocery stores and small convenience stores have literally been wiped out. There are many many buildings that are now empty. But if you drive by Walmart the parking lot is full. Sam Walton has built and empire but his business techniques will end up being the demise of small companies. The big corporate machines roll in and using there buying power to destroy what has survived for countless years.
Anyway his comment was “there goes the neighborhood” and I thought it strange at the time. My wife made a comment to me. Besides the change in scenery from 1 section of the country to the other she is disappointed that there is not much variety when it comes to shopping. What she uses as a baseline is Japan as you travel from town to town each is unique and has unique small business each etching out there own niche. Traveling through these Japanese towns makes it interesting because for the most part small business’s still thrive in Japan and they add to a communities culture. So in a weird sort of way Walmart and all of the other big chains are adding to the demise of the American culture. So I guess my dad was right when he said “there goes the neighborhood”. [Fast Company]