Roberto Goizueta and Jack Welch: The Wealth Builders - What makes a great leader? What common characteristics were shared? Why each an effective leader?

Essay by littleantUniversity, Master'sA+, October 2005

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What makes a great leader?

Grew up from completely different backgrounds, both Welch & Goizeuta are effective leaders who bring distressed organizations from the brink of tensions to a healthier course. They are able to leverage a complexity of organizations and their people. The two leaders are highly flexible adapting and improvising given changing strategies, shifting cultures, and the explosion of competition.

Although both have common characteristics, it cannot be asserted that there is cookie-cutter approaches to become effective leaders. Each organization is unique, as is each individual within that organization. Each of the impact of the two leaders' behavior and style can ultimately affect the climate and performance of their departments, business units, and the whole organization.

Therefore, building great leaders is not just about the individual and their innate personal characteristics; nor, just about the organizational environment - it's about both.

What common characteristics were shared?

With reference to the article, I would to summarize the common characteristics of Welch Goizeuta as follows:

* Inspire a Clear Vision.

Both leaders were not distracted by outside events. They also have in common a relentless focus and remarkable rudder of consistency. For Welch, getting the top job meant that the big game was beginning and for Goizueta, it was a chance to rebuild all that he had lost. For both men, it was a chance to settle up with the past.

* Stay Focused.

Goizueta set out to remove all distractions except his highest -return business and Welch built a complex empire in which the cyclical parts complemented one another, managers spurred one another on, and the result was an enterprise grander than the sum of its parts.

* Mobilize the heart of people.

When the leaders clearly articulate their visions, they motivate their employees towards the sharing goal. They...