What Makes Jack Welch an Effective Leader?

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What Makes Jack Welch an Effective Leader?

---ideas from the article “Will Legacy Live On?”

Before I talk about what makes Jack an effective leader, I want to explain briefly why I chose him as my study subject.

Why do I like him?

Jack Welch created a new model for business leaders everywhere. His genius leadership and management techniques are an example to anyone aspiring to a successful career. Why is he so famous?

He became the youngest CEO and Chairman of one of America's biggest and most respected companies (General Electric) at age 44, and successfully rewrote the rules of what an incredibly profitable and successful company should be, and had fun in the process.

What is leadership?

To know what makes an effective leader, one must know what leadership is. According to our textbook, the definition of leadership is the ability to influence a group towards the achievement of goals. In this case, the group is General Electronic Corporation. For a big business empire like GE, obviously, the final goal is to make as much profit as it can to please its shareholders. Let’s see what the article describes about how Jack influences his team to achieve this goal: “Growing a company that was valued by the market at $13 billion when he took it over in 1981 to a behemoth worth more than $400 billion when he retired last year is what is called wealth creation – big time.” Without Jack, GE couldn’t have today’s accomplishment.

What makes Jack be a leader?

• Personality

According to the “trait theories of leadership” in the textbook, six traits have been identified as being consistently associated with leadership: 1) ambition and energy; 2) the desire to lead; 3) honesty and integrity; 4) self-confidence; ...

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...world has become extremely fast and full of change. If the leader can’t adapt to changing conditions, it is very possible for his firm to be kicked out of the game. How can the firm change, though? The most effective way is to go through new ideas. Here, it reminders me Welch’s famous saying: "Change before you have to."

• Arts

At last, I want to quote my favorite part in this article, which the following, Leadership is not a science. It’s not a recipe. It’s not the five rules about this or the six effective habits of that. It’s an art, and as Georges Braque wrote, the only thing that matters in art is the part that can’t be explained.” The only reason that I like this part is that I don’t need to apply any leadership theory here.

My conclusion is that he is a very effective leader. If I were to become a successful CEO, I would follow his example.

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