Welch started from day one of his tenure as CEO to change the vision of GE as it relates to its employees, management and the aim of its products If product lines fail to secure #1 or #2 market position they should be sold. Three circle concept!
He wanted to centralize the chain of command structure, while taking out layers of bureaucracy. He wanted input from all sectors of the GE family when determining how to do jobs better. He wanted management to be responsive up as well as down the chain of command. This was the Hardware initiative. Software initiative was initiated by trying to create a cultural change in order to sustain high productivity environment. Welch wanted to replicate a small business culture, where ideals were freely shared with management and decisions were made on the spot. He started an initiative called "Work-out," where employees with the help of a facilitator put their ideals on paper.
Once the employee ideals were captured on paper, management was called in to hear the proposals and to make a decision on the spot. He also started an initiative in conjunction with "Work-out" called "Best practices" where he put together a team to learn from companies that were achieving higher productivity growth than GE. The team would look at those companies with successes and determine how they could mirror those ideals within the GE organization. Welch was committed to developing his leaders to embrace his cultural mindset change. He ensured his leaders got honest professional feedback, reasonable expectations about future positions they could hold and specific skills to get there and they would be given the necessary training to achieve those goals.
It is interesting to see the five page strategy play book which lists questions like, 1) What are...