Article written by Zoya Saxena
What really goes on in the Club? Brandi Joplin, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of Sam’s Club, visited the Canfield BHP class of 2022 during Business Lyceum to answer this burning question and share some experiences from her career path and time at Walmart.
Joplin started out as an industrial engineering major at the University of Arkansas, but eventually made the switch to Accounting and completed her CPA. While in college, Joplin was extremely involved on campus, which remains a large reason why she feels compelled to return and talk to students.
“I have a passion for connecting back to something that was such an instrumental part of my education,” Joplin said.
Joplin remains a believer in keeping in touch with “the younger generation of leaders.” She said she stays involved because she sees students as the budding professionals which will one day be the driving force of companies today.
When asked how she ended up at Walmart, Joplin explained how she found her first job there through a previous connection from the University of Alabama. She encouraged students to build a strong network organically as they go through their careers and schooling.
“Relationships matter,” Joplin said. “I am a relationship person. I like to build my network before I need them. You don’t want to be in a position of need when you start building your relationships.”
Joplin went on to talk about how her experience at Walmart has been extremely fruitful. She spent time elaborating on employee dedication and the lively company spirit. Joplin said she is proud and excited to be a part of a company that closely aligns with her values.
“You need to find a company that invests in you and has a culture where you believe in their purpose,” said Joplin. “When I came to Walmart, I believed in its purpose.”
Joplin also emphasized the importance of building one’s career on experience. She stressed the value of learning from a breadth of opportunities, some of which can be acquired through rotational programs or just by being open to trying new things.
“It is important to have that hands-on experience. You always need to be in learning mode. Be willing to get your hands dirty,” said Joplin.