A sustainable society can be described in terms of 5 conditions (Grunda, 2011)(the first four system conditions are from The Natural Step framework (Robert, 2002): 1. A sustainable society does not increase the concentration of materials from the earth crust in nature systemically; 2. A sustainable society does not increase the concentration of society made materials in nature systematically; 3. A sustainable society does not degrade nature by physical means systematically; 4. In a sustainable society human needs are met worldwide. 5. In a sustainable society technologies, capable of destroying the society itself are not available. Interrelationships among nature, society and business are explained in this way: a community, which cannot provide the basic food and conveniences, will not be a community for long. Therefore, the changes, happening both in nature and society systems are important for companies, this is not only a questions of companies’ social responsibility – society’s sustainable development is essential for survival of the company (Werbach, 2009). Because business is a part of society, business sustainability is described as business contributing to the objective of society to become sustainable. Sustainable business is defined according to the criteria of sustainable society, therefore sustainable business has to meet these criteria (Grunda, 2011): 1. A sustainable business does not contribute to systematic increases in concentrations of materials from the Earth's crust; 2. A sustainable business does not contribute to systematic increases in concentrations of materials produced by society; 3. A sustainable business does not contribute to systematic physical degradation of nature through physical means; 4. A sustainable business does not contribute to conditions that obstruct the possibilities of meeting human needs worldwide; 5. A sustainable business does not contribute to the existence of technologies, capable of destroying the society itself. With changes in the environment, the companies will be forced to change as well. Those companies that have not analysed the upcoming changes will be more pressured and will have to change rapidly. If the law legislations were stricter, such companies would have to catch up with the active companies quickly. In this case, active and future-oriented companies can plan in advance and introduce the new changes and techniques intentionally, so that the transformation of a company would be gradual and smooth (Čiegis, Grunda, 2007).
ECONOMICS AND MANAGEMENT: 2012. 17 (3) ISSN 2029-9338 (ONLINE) ISSN 1822-6515 (CD-ROM) 1203 Walmart cost leadership strategy and sustainability objectives Walmart has more than 8900 retail units in 15 countries and employs more than 2 million associates worldwide (Walmart, 2011a). With revenues of 421,9 billion US dollars in 2010 (Global 500, 2011) it is a largest corporation in the world, and has great impact on the markets it serves and the suppliers it works with.
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