Slight foxing on book ledge
Doubleday, 1993 - Electric industries - 384 pages
"Control your destiny or someone else will" is one of the rules by which Jack Welch lives - and wins. Like it or not, the ideas of General Electric's fiery CEO are defining the nature of business in our age, and revolutionizing the art of management. Welch is leading GE through a corporate transformation that ranks among the most ambitious, agonizing, and successful of all time. This book contains the lessons distilled from that experience, written by a key participant in the GE revolution and a respected financial journalist. Drastic changes in the contemporary business environment call for breakthrough management ideas. Almost everyone who holds a job is affected by the upheavals of intensifying global competition - and the worst is yet to come. Yet most corporations still organize work the way they did at the turn of the century, turning managers into bureaucrats while frustrated subordinates glumly tighten the bolts. The new way - GE's way - breaks the intellectual framework that defines the limits of traditional management. In a worldwide competition increasingly driven by speed, companies no longer have time to tell their people what to do. Unless every worker takes responsibility for his or her own job, a corporation can't perform - and those jobs will be threatened. That's why, instead of seeking better ways to control its employees, GE aims to liberate them. Putting such ideas into practice, as GE has done, is impossible without a frontal assault on the corporate status quo. Welch redesigned GE's entire organization, eliminating or divesting over 170,000 jobs, one third the company's total, buying and selling multibillion-dollar businesses as if they were baseball cards. At thesame time, he fostered a companywide debate about values that has fundamentally altered the way GEers think about work. What began as a conflict of ideas became a test of wills, pitting the leaders against the led. The tale of how Welch won GEers' allegiance ranks among the most fascinating in the annals of business. Drawing on intimate knowledge of GE, coauthors Noel M. Tichy and Stratford Sherman bring to life the painful process of transformation and its success. The remarkable tale of GE's revitalization teaches lessons essential for the well-being of managers and laymen alike. The greatest power we have is the ability to envision our own fates - and change ourselves. "Control your destiny" is more than a useful business idea. It is the essence of responsibility, and the most basic requirement for success.