…Jack Welch… if ever yeez look for inspiration, in any field, look no further than this guy…

harvard

…about a hundred years ago, when this ol ‘Jurassic was about half the age I am now, my then employers in Asia decided my business brain needed a retread and they sent me to Harvard University on the Advanced Management  Program… a commando course in business management techniques, equivalent to a two-year degree course condensed into four months… intensive stuff… brushing shoulders with 160 of the creme de la creme from around the WURLD’s executive salons… I was second youngest in that Program at the age of 38, which will give yeez some idea of the experience that contributed to the course… I’m glad I did it, and I would unreservedly recommend it to any aspiring business executive, but it was strenuous WURK, and one that I would not choose to repeat… nonetheless, there were some fabulous moments during the four months… none of them compare to the Golden Moment involving Jack Welch, who at that time was the Chairman and CEO of General Electric

jack

…by any standards the man was, and still is, recognised as a monumental motivator and ‘turnaround’ guy, and he is one of my role models for my own business of helping ailing companies and turnaround situations… but I digress… on one famous day during the course, it was announced that Mister Welch would come to Harvard to address the school.. and we ‘oldies’ were included in the audience… the auditorium must have held about 2,000 students, including ourselves and all the faculty members from the entire Harvard spectrum… this was a man everyone wanted to hear speak… and here’s the strange thing… until then, I was unaware that Jack Welch had a speech impediment… regardless, the man’s delivery and content was spell-binding… a consummate presenter… when it came to the Question and Answer session with the audience, he fielded a few questions from the floor, and eventually one arrogant young student took the floor microphone and began, ‘Mister Welch, it’s obvious to all of us that you have a very marked speech impediment’… huge gasps of disdain from all round the auditorium were followed by the back-up piece of the student’s question, ‘how much has it held you back in your career?’… unperturbed, the great man responded, ‘w-w-w-well, y-y-y-young man, you c-c-c-could have a p-p-p-point there, because at the m-m-m-moment I’m only n-n-n-number ONE!,  next question!!!’… the place erupted in an ear-splitting roar of a standing ovation that lasted several minutes… it’s not recorded if the youthful questioner ever succeeded in his own chosen profession… and all these years later, I still tell people that story…  if ever yeez look for inspiration, in any field, look no further than this guy, Jack Welch… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!

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7 Comments

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7 responses to “…Jack Welch… if ever yeez look for inspiration, in any field, look no further than this guy…

  1. Seems he long before had met that problem and conquered it, so the question didn’t bother him a bit. Anyone who could rise to the top in business and get up before a crowd, giving a great speech, wouldn’t let a question like that stop him. Great inspirational story, Seumas. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Cracker, Jurassic. It’s a great tale. Harvard indeed (grabs forelock and bows so hard he does a double somersault).

    Liked by 1 person

  3. 🙂 Perfect retort. The course itself sounds worth its cost in gold (and I suspect it must have been expensive). I’ve visited Harvard but not studied there. A beautiful spot.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great story about Mr Welch. One parents and schools should tell children – multiple times.

    Like

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