GE and Jack Welch

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Case Details:

Case Code : LDEN002
Case Length : 11 Pages
Period : 1981-2001
Pub Date : 2002
Teaching Note : Available
Organization : GE
Industry : Varied
Countries : USA

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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Jack Welch's Leadership Style

Analysts felt that Jack Welch's profound grasp on GE stemmed from knowing the company and those who worked for it. More than half of his time was devoted to "people issues". Most importantly, he had created something unique at a big company - Informality. The hierarchy that Jack Welch inherited with 29 layers of management was completely changed during his tenure. Everyone, from secretaries, to chauffeurs to factory workers, called him 'Jack'. Everyone could expect - at one time or another - to see him. Analysts felt that Jack Welch gave employees a sense that he knew them. Commenting on the informality at GE, Jack Welch said, "The story about GE that hasn't been told is the value of an informal place. I think it's a big thought...

Leadership and Entrepreneurship Case Studies | Case Study in Management, Operations, Strategies, Leadership and Entrepreneurship, Case Studies

Jack Welch - The Strategist

Analysts felt that Jack Welch was focused and analytical. He restructured GE's portfolio from 350 businesses during 1980s down to two-dozen core activities by late 1990s. During his initial years as CEO, he either expanded internally or made acquisitions to position all GE's businesses as either number one or number two in their fields. The planned acquisition of Honeywell, Inc., which didn't materialize, was expected to redefine GE for the years to come...

Jack Welch - The Leadership Guru

After stepping down as the CEO, Jack Welch became an advisor to William Harrison, CEO, JP Morgan Chase. He also entered into an agreement to become a leadership guru to several other clients. He was also named the special partner at New York investment firm, Clayton, Dubilier & Rice. Jack Welch also authored his autobiography, "Jack: Straight from the Gut', which was at the top of the best-sellers list in 2001. Analysts felt that Jack Welch's influence did not end at GE. Many executives who had worked under Jack Welch went on to head more than a dozen U.S. companies...


Exhibit I: Reg Jones Introducing Jack Welch at the CEO in 1981
Exhibit II: Jack Welch at his First Board Meeting as Chairman
Exhibit III: The Welch Era at GE
Exhibit IV: GE Under Jack Welch
Exhibit V: Jack Welch's Monthly Program


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