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In anecdotal detail and with self-effacing humor, Jack Welch gives us the people who shaped his life (most notably his Irish mother) and the big hits and the big misses that characterized his career. Starting at GE in 1960 as an engineer earning $10,500, Jack learned the need for "getting out of the pile" when his first raise was the same as everyone else's. He stayed out of the corporate bureaucracy while running a $2 billion collection of GE businesses - in a sweater and blue jeans - out of a Hilton in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.
After avoiding GE's Fairfield, Connecticut headquarters for years, Jack was eventually summoned by then-Chairman Reg Jones, who was planning his succession. There ensued one of the most painful parts of his career - Jack's dark-horse struggle, filled with political tension, to make it to the CEO's chair. A hug from Reg confirmed Jack was the new boss - and started the GE transformation. The riveting story of his last year - the elaborate process of selecting a successor and the attempt to buy Honeywell - is also told in compelling detail.
This is classic Jack Welch: down to earth, powerful, and filled with common sense.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Plato777 on 12-31-02
With this honest review of his business life -and not only- Jack Welch allows us to see how a truly inspired and determined businessman changed the culture of one of the largest companies in the world.
Well written and beautifuly narrated. A real joy to read (listen).
16 of 17 people found this review helpful
By Yoed on 10-08-04
Get it, you won't regret it.
Easy listen. Very interesting character. This books is Jack's auto biography on his life - of which his role as GE's CEO is a prime focus. I love it as its a break from your traditional business books - it doesn't try to be a business book. This is simply Jack telling the stories of his approach to business during various positions in GE. It's not preachy; you have to derive the lessons out of it yourself.
Get only the unabridged. Facinating guy.
6 of 6 people found this review helpful
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Amazon Customer on 07-24-06
A fascinating insight into the mindset and career of one of the most influential and successful business people that ever was. I found this book extremely valuable because it opened by eyes to the private sector corporate world after spending much of my life as a Naval Officer. Truly inspirational. Buy it.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
By Amazon Customer on 03-08-18
Finished within a Week
I'm very busy but having my first audiobook has allowed me to get back into reading and finish the book in just a week. It's nice to be able to read again.
The book keeps you interested and anyone with a slight interest in business will be hooked. The narrator captures Jack's passion perfectly and is very good.
The one way that this audiobook could be better is if the chapters were fixed. The digital options for the chapters don't line up with those in the recordings.
Overall, great book!