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Thesis StatementManagement guru Jack Welch, former CEO of General Electric, has been instrumental in forming today's top business management leaders by imparting effective knowledge in leadership management; he is widely credited with transforming GE into a multibillion-dollar conglomerate.I. Jack Welch - Who is the man? A. Biography - 1.Born in Salem, Massachusetts, in 1935. a. Growing up - The family lived in one of the poorer neighborhoods of Salem, Massachusetts. Welch has said that his mother was the most important influence on him, cheering him on in sports and academics, and always encouraging him to strive for more b. Schooling - Welch continued to pursue his education at the University of Illinois, with M.S.
and PhD degrees in chemical engineering. B. Moving up the Corporate latter in GEII. Leadership Style of Jack WelchA. Strategy - "Fix it, Sell it, or close it" Jack Welch fired more then 100,000 people (almost one in four). Neutron Jack devised the 'vitality curve' where the bottom 10 per cent of employees were challenged to improve or leave.
B. Took General Electric from $13 billion in 1981 to more than $300 billion when he left in 2001. Ran GE like a corner shop - keeping an eye on profits, cash flow, and peopleIII. What is he doing now?A. After his retirement in 2001 served as corporate consultant to a group of Fortune 500 companies, all in different industries B.
Wrote New York Times best seller "Straight from the Gut" published in Sept. 2001Has a new book coming out in 2005 entitled "Winning" a how-to book with Suzy Wetlaufer, former Harvard Business Review editor and Welch's fianc'ee.Management Guru Jack Welch - Inspirational Visionary Jack Welch is one of America's best known and most highly respected corporate CEO's of all time. Vadim Kotelnikov's website Leadership and New Management Secrets discusses how Jack Welch's vision to restructure General Electric to a "unique learning culture and boundaryless [sic] organization" has help make GE one of the fastest capital growing companies. In the 1980's he was said to be "the biggest S.O.B.," but today his management techniques are now credited with empowering the employee ("Jack Welch Gurus"). Management guru Jack Welch, former CEO of General Electric, has been instrumental in forming today's top business management leaders by imparting effective knowledge in leadership management; he is widely credited with transforming GE into a multibillion-dollar conglomerate.
Jack Welch was born on November 19, 1935 in Salem, Massachusetts ("Thought Leader"). His father, John Francis Welch, Sr. was a conductor with the Boston & Maine Railroad. His mother, Grace Andrews Welch, was a housewife. Welch has said that his mother was the most important influence on him, cheering him on in sports and academics, and always encouraging him to strive for more. Competitive and outspoken even as a child, he was known among his friends as an expert negotiator as well as a diehard opponent. He and his friends converted and excavated gravel pits into a park where they played fiercely competitive games; they called it "the Pit." Jack Welch excelled academically as well. In school, Welch played several sports, including hockey, golf, and baseball.
He was a Junior Rotarian, senior class treasurer, and a member of the Student Council. He was voted "most talkative and noisiest boy" by his classmates, and in a high school literary magazine he named his repressive desire as "to make a million." Welch did not win the Navy ROTC scholarship for which he was nominated, and he had to put aside his dreams for going to Dartmouth for the less prestigious, but less expensive University of Massachusetts. While at the University of Massachusetts, Welch majored in Engineering, achieving high grades in spite of his active social life in an athletic fraternity. After finishing college he went to Graduate School at the University of Illinois, finishing a Master's Degree and a PhD. in Chemical Engineering ("Thought Leader"). In 1959, he married Carolyn Osburn, and in 1960 he took his first job working for General Electric back in his home state.
He was part of the Chemical Development Organization, a wing of GE meant to develop new businesses in chemicals. Welch was known as a maverick from the beginning. Working away from headquarters, and in a section of the company outside the traditional electric businesses, he was unhappy because of the low raise he was given, and he felt that GE had a strict bureaucracy. He would have left the company had it not been for Reuben Gutoff ("Thought Leader"). In 1968, Welch was appointed General Manager of the worldwide Plastics Division and became a vice-president in 1972.
His move up the corporate ladder was steady. He became a senior vice-president in 1977, and a vice-chairman and executive officer in 1979. In 1981, he was appointed Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) ("Thought Leader"). General Electric is a highly diverse corporation, manufacturing a wide variety of goods from light bulbs and appliances to aircraft engines and nuclear weapons. GE enjoyed national recognition as a model of American industry, as well as rising profits and sales from $13 billion in 1981 to over $300 billion in 2001 when Welch retired ("Jack Welch Gurus").
Welch listened to the market analysts who predicted that corporations would have to restructure their top-heavy bureaucracies and huge staffs of business school planners. Over the next five years, Welch put his plan into action, selling 232 businesses, closing 73 plants and facilities, and firing more than 100,000 employees. His strategy was "Fix it, sell it, or close it." He got rid of any part of the company that wasn't number one or two in its field ("Jack Welch Gurus"). Jack Welch's informal approach allowed him to get to know his employees, interact with them, and get involved in all aspects of the business and his employees coined him "Neutron Jack" ("Thought Leader"). The title equated him with the Pentagon's planned neutron bomb, an atomic bomb that theoretically kills people while leaving buildings and structures intact.
Welch also implemented a revolutionary "workout" program. In the late 1980s, GE instituted "workout," a strategy session approach that quickly became famous in the corporate world. Welch also made bold acquisitions and the company acquired more than $25 billion dollars worth of new companies during the 1980s and early 1990s, including Hungary's Tungsram Lighting Company, Borg-Warner Chemicals and RCA, a corporation that included the television network, NBC. The success of Welch's radical restructuring was quickly apparent. While GE's net earnings when Welch took over were good, just under $2 billion dollars annually, they leaped to over $5 billion dollars by 1993 and in 1996, GE had a market value of $200 billion dollars. Welch "ran GE like a corner shop - keeping an eye on profits, cash-flow, and people" ("Jack Welch Gurus").
In November 2000, GE announced that forty-four year old Jeffrey R. Immelt would succeed Welch until his retirement. Meanwhile, Welch was hard at work on a new book. In describing the project, Welch told Financial News in May 2001 "I hope it is a story that will inspire some young people to take on a job in business as a noble profession" (Welch, 1998). Welch has undeniably earned a reputation as a "can do" buff, and rightfully so. This is particularly evident within the strategies Welch has employed. With so many chief executives dodging investigations, taxes, or shareholders' wrath these days, the term "execution" conjures ominous images, but it's just what corporate America needs most right now, according to Larry Bossidy, Chairman of Honeywell International, Incorporated, and management guru, Ram Charan. In "Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done," they attempt to explain why visionaries often fail, and what steps leaders must take to translate their strategies into results. Bossidy logged 34 years at GE before leaving in 1991 to head AlliedSignal Inc., and Charan is one of the few consultants allowed into GE's inner circle. Welch is also cited as the quintessential execution artist, praised for everything from his "boundaryless [sic] corporation" to his informal lets-get-it-done style (Brady, 2002).
Jack: Straight from the Gut is the book which Jack Welch himself put together in 2001, and while the book does make it clear that many failed companies were staffed with bright, well-paid people, who are misdirected, demoralized, or working at cross purposes - all of these aspects of the corporate leader come across clearly in his book. At the same time, they require robust, realistic strategies and "action" plans if ...
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