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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
General Electric CEO Jack Welch, one of the world's most influential and consistently successful businesspeople, has been hailed as a leader who both developed new concepts and revised existing procedures to meet evolving needs. Anyone who is eager to understand the full nature of Welch's achievement will be grateful to Jeffrey Krames, who has compiled a well-organized, easy-to-use, and comprehensive A-Z guide to Welch's business vocabulary and ideas.
Encyclopedic in scope, The Jack Welch Lexicon of Leadership provides more than mere definitions: It details the evolution of such signature programs as Six Sigma, articulates the lessons GE learned while implementing these programs, and serves as an anthology of business practices that have impacted almost every facet of corporate America. As a veteran editor of books about GE and its charismatic CEO, Krames is scrupulous about explaining all of Welch's core doctrines in depth and with thoughtful supporting examples.
While reading Krames's piece on Six Sigma, I was surprised to learn that Motorola first developed the famous quality concept program so deeply associated with Welch's tenure at GE. In fact, Welch had to be persuaded of the worthiness of the program by his friend Larry Bossidy, a former GE vice chairman and now Allied Signal's CEO. However, once Welch became convinced of Six Sigma's value, he implemented it with such effectiveness that he was often looked upon as the spokesperson for Six Sigma. Any manager who is struggling to introduce new ideas into the workplace will benefit from the understanding of Welch's methods that Krames provides.
While readers could go through the book from cover to cover, it's much easier to use it as a reference tool (or as a companion to Welch's Jack: Straight from the Gut since there is some repetition of ideas and themes. However, The Jack Welch Lexicon of Leadership is definitely worthwhile for curious readers looking to master the essentials of Welch's business practices and leadership philosophy. (Kathleen M. Purcell)