Case Study

Leadership at General Electric: A healthy disrespect for history

17 pages
May 2007
Reference: IMD-3-1780

The world, and General Electric, had changed a lot since Jack Welch left as CEO in 2001. His successor, Jeff Immelt, had undertaken major change in the last five years. His challenge to GE — to generate significant growth internally, to diversify its revenue stream and to innovate and nourish the product pipeline — had been resoundingly met. Why then did GE’s share price languish and lag the expansion of the S&P 500? The question had to be asked: Would the market accept anyone else at the helm of GE besides Welch?

Learning Objective

Contrasting leadership styles and the role of non-quantifiable factors in a manager’s success; To stimulate discussion of corporate culture as a key element of performance and strategy; Successor’s challenges in charting a company’s future course in the shadow of a “guru” CEO; How much can be changed about a firm and yet retain the “core”?

Keywords
Transformation, Corporate Culture
Settings
Global, United States of America
General Electric
1981-2007
Type
Published Sources
Copyright
© 2007
Available Languages
English
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