When the pandemic hit the U.S. in March, Walmart was one of the essential retailers that had to quickly pivot to meet customer needs. That meant not only leaning into existing services like curbside pickup, but adding a two-hour Express Delivery service and a Walmart+ membership program, along with community-focused initiatives like drive-in movie theaters and a virtual summer camp.
Janey Whiteside, Walmart’s first-ever chief customer officer, will speak at Brandweek Master Live on Sept. 16 about the retailer’s position as a changemaker. Leading up to the event, we talked about Walmart’s response to the pandemic, as well as one aspect that hasn’t actually changed this year: the retailer’s intent to forge emotional connections with consumers and help them get to know the real Walmart.
This interview has been edited for clarity.
This year has brought unprecedented challenges for…