[Department or School Name]
The key issue which has been discussed in this case is about General Electric’s Ex-Ceo, Jack Welch’s Leadership qualities and successes over the last two decades that is, from 1981 to 2001. Jack Welch was an exceptional leader who took General Electric to new heights of success and opened new horizons for the company. The case has discussed in great detail the way Jack Welch transformed General Electric through his early priorities of re-structuring the company through the fix, sell or close approach (Bartlett & Wozny (2005).
In this approach, Jack Welch basically wanted to fix, sell or close down the uncompetitive businesses of the company in order to free the capital and to invest it in some better acquisition opportunities (Bartlett & Wozny (2005).
The case reports that from 1981 to 1990, Jack Welch sold up to 200 uncompetitive businesses of the company and in return made up to 370 acquisitions. By the end of 1980s, GE had been successful in completely restructuring itself under Jack Welch’s dynamic leadership. After accomplishing the re-structuring priority, Welch moved his attention towards cultural change initiatives (Bartlett & Wozny (2005).
Welch believed that the productivity of the company could without any doubt be increased through re-structuring and downsizing but the company would not be able to maintain long term productivity unless and until it does not bring cultural change to match the pace of the rapidly changing global business environment (Bartlett & Wozny (2005).
In the late 80s, Welch greatly transformed the functioning of the company by two of his main initiatives of going global and developing leaders for the future progress of the company (Bartlett & Wozny (2005).
Welch initially wanted to form a solid base at home and then he wanted to enter and explore the international markets. Therefore, once he had successfully re-structured the company and had implemented a flexible organizational culture, Welch moved his attention towards internationalization and immediately made a huge deal with Thomson S.A by taking over the successful French electronics company (Bartlett & Wozny, 2005).
Jack Welch knew the importance of the company’s employees and along with the aspect of going global, he made sure that the employees of the company were highly motivated with the new organizational changes and culture. He saw future leaders in the employees of the company and due to this, he made extensive efforts to further develop the leader in them (Bartlett & Wozny, 2005).
Into the 90s: Boundary-less Behaviour
Stretch: Achieving the Impossible
Through this initiative, Jack Welch tried to motivate the workforce and the management of the company to stretch beyond their beliefs in achieving their targets and objectives (Bartlett & Wozny, 2005).
In 1994, Welch focused his attention towards entering different service businesses to reduce the traditional dependence of the company on industrial products only. His exceptional leadership talent allowed GE to come highly successful through diversity.
Six Sigma Quality Initiative
Jack Welch also adopted the Six Sigma quality initiative to boost the quality and the productivity of the company at lower costs (Bartlett & Wozny, 2005).
“A Players” with Four Es
Jack Welch made extensive efforts to hire only those employees who could play the role of A players by following the four elements of self energy, the ability to energize others, the ability to achieve an edge in tough situations and the ability to execute vision into results.
Toward’s Retirement – E-business initiative
Jack Welch’s leadership efforts for General Electric are a remarkable example for thoroughly understanding the importance of charismatic and dynamic leadership. Welch displayed all the essential qualities of a leader and was highly successful in transforming the company during the period of 1981 to 2001 (Bartlett & Wozny, 2005).
The best recommendation for GE is to follow the example of Jack’s leadership and the initiatives that he had implemented. If the same organizational culture and the initiatives are followed in the future, then there is no way that GE would have to come across any difficulties, challenges or problems in the future (Bartlett & Wozny, 2005).
Christopher A. Bartlett & Meg Wozny (2005) GE’s Two-Decade Transformation: Jack
Welch Leadership Harvard Business Review- May Edition