General Electric is confronted with Welch's looming retirement, and the worry confronting a number of people if whether there is an individual who could continue the rapid trend of change and innovation, and development elements of the Welch era. After shortly introducing the Welch legacy and Welch’s change of the firm’s business portfolio in the 1980s, the case talks about Welch's innovativeideas through the late 1980s and 1990s. It concentrates on six of Welch's real change programs: The "Product" Initiatives, Globalization, Redefining Leadership, Stretch Objectives, Service Business Development, and Six Sigma Quality. Approved staff can view an exam copy of a multimedia case on the internet by adding a Free Trial to their Library.
1. What is your evaluation of Jack Welch's leadership of General Electric?
2. What are his objectives in the series of initiatives he launched in the late 1980s and 1990s? What are the linkages between achieving these objectives and General Electric's performance?
3. Why did Jack Welch invest so heavily in the Work-Out process? What is he trying to accomplish? How is it related to innovation?
4. What are the assumptions about people and organizations that seem to underlie his view of leadership?5. What does Welch consider to be the appropriate role of the general manager?6. How does he define an effective leader within General Electric?