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Jack Audiobook

Jack: Straight from the Gut

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Publisher's Summary

As CEO of General Electric for the past 20 years, Jack Welch has built its market cap by more than $450 billion and established himself as the most admired business leader in the world. His championing of initiatives like Six Sigma quality, globalization, and e-business have helped define the modern corporation. At the same time, he is a gutsy boss who has forged a unique philosophy and an operating system that relies on a "boundary-less" sharing of ideas, an intense focus on people, and an informal, give-and-take style that makes bureaucracy the enemy.


In anecdotal detail and with self-effacing humor, Jack Welch gives us the people who shaped his life (most notably his Irish mother) and the big hits and the big misses that characterized his career. Starting at GE in 1960 as an engineer earning $10,500, Jack learned the need for "getting out of the pile" when his first raise was the same as everyone else's. He stayed out of the corporate bureaucracy while running a $2 billion collection of GE businesses - in a sweater and blue jeans - out of a Hilton in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.


After avoiding GE's Fairfield, Connecticut headquarters for years, Jack was eventually summoned by then-Chairman Reg Jones, who was planning his succession. There ensued one of the most painful parts of his career - Jack's dark-horse struggle, filled with political tension, to make it to the CEO's chair. A hug from Reg confirmed Jack was the new boss - and started the GE transformation. The riveting story of his last year - the elaborate process of selecting a successor and the attempt to buy Honeywell - is also told in compelling detail.


This is classic Jack Welch: down to earth, powerful, and filled with common sense.

©2001 by Jack Welch; (P)2001 by Time Warner AudioBooks

What the Critics Say

"As a self-portrait of one of America's most successful modern business leaders, Jack is remarkable for its candor." (Ther Economist)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (821 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Grunt Style 12-16-11
    Grunt Style 12-16-11 Member Since 2015

    Founder/CEO of Grunt Style. Design, markets, produces and fulfills our own products. No formal business education, military background.

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    "How Jack did it and how he thinks."

    ...is basically how he writes this book. It's very interesting since I was quite young in the 80s and don't remember some of the situations back then.

    Jack Welch stresses the culture that he tried to breeds into GE. He explains how he was willing to make changes if it bettered the company later on in life.

    Overall, great book, probably a one or two time listen though, but well worth the listen if you are interested in business culture and dealing with management.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Russell Seaford, Australia 09-05-10
    Russell Seaford, Australia 09-05-10
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    "Great Book"

    This book was fascinating and I would recommend to anyone interested in business at any level. Really enjoyed it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Engelbrecht New York, USA 04-25-09
    Engelbrecht New York, USA 04-25-09 Member Since 2006
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    "Compulsary for any busness leader!"

    This recollection of facts, figures and thought processes are inspiring, even for me who is not really interested in GE as a company. Jack's leadership style is practical, simple and very effective. I made notes as I listened and I am sucessfully applying many of his ideas in my business.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephen west pymble, Australia 01-19-09
    Stephen west pymble, Australia 01-19-09 Member Since 2016
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    "Great Insight"

    A good business book that both is interesting walking through the management life of Jack Welsh, but also giving some great tips and tricks for everyday management. It is not about agreeing with all the approaches but getting more selections for your work tool box… I highly recommend.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christopher Hacienda Heights , CA, USA 02-05-07
    Christopher Hacienda Heights , CA, USA 02-05-07
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    "Good insight"

    Jack Welch is by far one of the most talented CEOs today, The language is very uncomplicated and it has several stories in there that drive Welch's themes like candor and mission. It was odd to listen to another voice giving Jack Welch's autobiography, though.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Drew Austin, TX, United States 03-15-05
    Drew Austin, TX, United States 03-15-05 Member Since 2017
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    "Interesting account- little practical advice"

    I found the stories interesting, but gleaned very little in the way of "how to" apply Jack's lessons learned to the business world.

    Maybe he is being modest in recounting the tales of his rise to power at GE, but it almost seems like luck had as much to do with his success as his drive, ambition and smarts.

    The narrator is excellent and sounds very much like Jack, including N.E. accent and charm.

    I would have given more than 3/5 stars, but I was hoping for more practical information from the title.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julian Melbourne, N/A, Australia 06-25-04
    Julian Melbourne, N/A, Australia 06-25-04
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    "Motivating - fun yet educational"

    Jack's stories and examples are truly motivating, the greater context of his drive and vision combined with his zero tolerance for under performers created success which shows us what we are capable of achieving in business... and anyone capable knows it'll never be easy!
    I was surprised that the narration was by Jack himself, but as I listened, it made sense for this self confessed control freak to do it himself.
    This book should be enjoyable and stimulating for any person with drive to achieve or a high pressure business role, it allows the mind to adapt portions of his experiences to your own circumstances. It provides an entertaining escape without losing touch with reality and is educational at the same time. - We can all learn something from this.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laika 03-27-04
    Laika 03-27-04

    laika99

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    "Good portrait of the mind-set of a succesful CEO"

    Jack Welch clearly exposes the elements which made his career and his company succesful. Vision, passion, search for excellence, sharing of ideas throughout GE divisions, etc ... amazing how one man mobilized so many people. Also includes some interesing anecdotes gathered from his career.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    GUILHERME FERREIRA 02-11-04 Member Since 2004
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    "Very Good"

    Good for anyone, but even better if you are familiar with the names and faces that made history in corporate America in the last 20 years. Jack's path touched that of every major businessperson in the country during that period, from Warren Buffet to Bill Gates, as well as that of countless artists, politicians and other influential personalities.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Raul Doral, FL, USA 09-28-03
    Raul Doral, FL, USA 09-28-03 Member Since 2005
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    "To review some MBA topis, good"

    If you want to have some ideas of how to create crisis inside your company (six sigma, trainning, flat structure...), this is good example. To follow this guy as a person, no, this is not a good book.

    Para lectores en espa?ol, el libro es bastante ameno, tiene buenas ideas de negocios que se ense?an en las maestrias de administracion. El audio es facil de entender, el lector es muy bueno, se posesiona del libro.

    2 of 5 people found this review helpful

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