Jack Welch On Successful Leadership

Jack Welch On Successful Leadership

Jack Welch On Successful Leadership
by Josh Lowry

Jack Welch was the Chairman and CEO of General Electric from 1981 to 2001. During Welch’s tenure at General Electric, the company’s value increased 4000% and produced multiple executives that became Fortune 500 CEOs. Below are the Six Rules for Successful Leadership outlined in his book, Straight from the Gut (Warner Business Books, 2001). Whether you are leading a large company or startup, the six rules apply. They are:

1 – Be candid with everyone.
Leaders have an obligation to tell people how they are doing and where they stand. Not being clear and upfront about performance is unfair. When leaders are candid with people, candor will be returned to them. Once mixed messages are eliminated, people become faster, more creative and more energetic.

2 – Change before you have to.
Leaders who create change make it personal. People change when they see how it will improve the company and more importantly, their lives. Leaders must embrace and reinforce constant change and reinvention within the company. If the outside world is changing faster than the people on the inside, the company is falling behind.

3 – Control your destiny or someone else will.
Winning businesses are number one or two in their markets. Number one and two can defend market share with innovation and pricing while others cannot. Others also suffer more during downturns. Why sell a profitable third place business?  When number one sneezes, it will get pneumonia. First place businesses control their destiny.

4 – Do not manage, lead.
Leaders touch the hearts and minds of people to help them grow and thrive. They walk around with a can of fertilizer in one hand and a jug of water in the other. They continually pour fertilizer and water on flowers (people) in the garden (business). Some will grow. Some will have to be cut out. Give everyone a chance to flourish.

5 – Face reality as it is, not as it was or as you wish it were.
Values are descriptive behaviors. Because values, not objectives, ultimately define what an organization and people become, leaders must constantly explain and model them. For example, facing reality as it is, not as it was or you wish it were was a key value at GE. If people could not face reality, they had to go.

6 – If you do not have a competitive advantage, do not compete.
If you are not better than the best in what you are doing, in both people and product, define what resources you need to get there and go after it or disengage. Wake up every day knowing that someone, somewhere is doing something better than you. Leaders must instill in others to always find a better way, every day.

All contents copyright © 2014, Josh Lowry. All rights reserved.

Best of Twitter – November, 2014

Best of Twitter – November, 2014

Best of Twitter – November, 2014
by Josh Lowry

A summary of my tweets and re-tweets during the month.

  • 20% of the WHL plays of the week involve the Seattle Thunderbirds. @SeattleTbirds
  • 74% of enterprise companies have a hybrid cloud strategy. @Josh_Lowry
  • 75% of businesses are ill prepared for disaster recovery. @vCloud
  • A boat does not go forward if each one is rowing their own way. – Swahili Proverb
  • A leader leads by example, not by force. – Sun Tzu
  • A real vision is lived, not framed. @JesseLynStoner
  • Achieving 60% of the impossible is much better than 100% of the ordinary. @DonDodge
  • All problems and stresses are created by an undisciplined mind. @ExpertLeaders
  • Average company’s lifespan on S&P 500 in 1960s was 60 years. Today, it is 10 years. @ValaAfshar
  • Business opportunities are like buses … there is always another one coming. – Richard Branson
  • Cloud is the new datacenter and AWS is the best datacenter. – Godfrey Sullivan
  • Compliance and security are becoming reasons that customers move to the cloud. – Andy Jassy
  • Compliance and security no longer barriers to cloud. They are now key drivers for going to it. @Josh_Lowry
  • Delta between public cloud IaaS providers: AWS ($4.7B), Azure ($156M) and Google ($66M). @BButlerNWW
  • Do not wait for an opportunity. Make one. @LeadershipFreak
  • Every day, when you wake up, choose to live with positivity. @TEDTalks
  • Friends do not let friends build data centers. @Stu
  • Harvard Business Review declares Jeff Bezos the best CEO in the world. @BusinessInsider
  • I am anxious to praise, but loathe to find fault. – Charles M. Schwab
  • If leadership is influence, then dominance is not leadership. @LeadershipFreak
  • If you cannot decide what to do, decide what not to do. @LeadershipFreak
  • If you do not change, you get stuck. When you get stuck, you do not move forward. – Anonymous
  • If you want to discuss cloud or managed services, please stop by Booth 1000 at AWS re:Invent. @Josh_Lowry
  • Leadership is the ability to see the potential before potential even exists. @ExpertLeaders
  • Looking the other way never solves problems. @ExpertLeaders
  • Make decision w 40%-70% of information. <40%, shooting from hip. >70%, delaying unnecessarily. – Colin Powell
  • Narrow focus to 5-7 highly important goals to achieve each day to combat the whirlwind of the job. @Josh_Lowry
  • One AWS datacenter typically has between 50,000+ servers, often 80,000+. @CloudPundit
  • Results only [versus results + values] is the formula for toxicity. @LeadershipFreak
  • Someday people will summarize your life in a single sentence. My advice: Pick it now! @SteveGutzler
  • Spend 80% of time with best employees; 20% with other. Coach first string, not third string lineup. @Josh_Lowry
  • Successful leaders are dissatisfied with the world. @LeadershipFreak
  • Successful people plan how they spend their time to focus on right priorities vs urgent to-dos. @Josh_Lowry
  • The only way to combat failure is to decide to see it as an opportunity to improve direction. @SteveGutzler
  • There are no traffic jams along the extra mile. – Roger Staubach
  • Unless you change how you are, you will always have what you got. – Jim Rohn
  • Victorious warriors win first then go to war. Defeated warriors go to war first then seek to win. – Sun Tzu
  • What we fill our minds with enables us to be a resource for others. @JMarkCole
  • We are a product, not a prisoner of our past.” @ExpertLeaders
  • When writing the story of your life, do not let anyone else hold the pen. @ExpertLeaders
  • Who invests in you matters more than how much they invest in you. @KPBC
  • Yesterday is over. Get on with tomorrow. – Jack Welch

All contents copyright © 2014, Josh Lowry. All rights reserved.


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