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Who Says Elephants Can't Dance?: Leading a Great Enterprise through Dramatic Change

Who Says Elephants Can't Dance?: Leading a Great Enterprise through Dramatic Change

Lowest online price: 870
Language English
Contributor(s) Louis V., Jr. Gerstner
Binding Paperback
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Paperback, Import, December 16, 2003

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Product Description

IBM had its most profitable year ever in 1990. By 1993, the computer industry had changed so rapidly that the company was on its way to losing $16 billion and IBM was on a watch list for extinction. Victimized by its own lumbering size, an insular corporate culture, and the PC era IBM had helped invent itself. Then Lou Gerstner was brought in as CEO to IBM. Almost everyone watching the rapid demise of this American icon presumed Gerstner had joined IBM to preside over its continued dissolution into a confederation of autonomous business units. This strategy would have effectively eliminated the corporation that had invented many of the industry's most important technologies. Instead, Gerstner took hold of the company and demanded the manager's work to re-establish IBM's mission as a customer-focused provider of computing solutions. Moving ahead of his critics, Gerstner made the hold decision to keep the company together, slash prices on his core product to keep the company competitive.

The Change In IBM's Growth

He defiantly announced, "The last thing IBM needs right now is a vision." Who Says Elephants Can't Dance?, tells the story of IBM's competitive and cultural transformation. Gerstner in his own words offers a blow-by-blow account of his arrival at the company and his campaign to rebuild the leadership team and give the workforce a renewed sense of purpose. In the process, Gerstner defined a strategy for the computing giant and remade the ossified culture bred by the company's own success. The first-hand story of an extraordinary turnaround of the company with a unique case study in managing crisis. The thoughtful reflection on the computer industry and the principles of leadership. Who Says Elephants Can't Dance? sums up Lou Gerstner's historic business achievement. Taking readers deep into the world of IBM's CEO, Gerstner recounts the high-level meetings and explains the pressure-filled and no-turning-back decisions that had to be made. He also offers his hard-won conclusions about the essence of what makes a great company run. In the history of modern business, many companies have gone from being industry leaders to the verge of extinction. Through the heroic efforts of a new management team, some of those companies have even succeeded in resuscitating themselves and living on in the shadow of their former stature. But only one company has been at the pinnacle of an industry fallen to near collapse and then beyond anyone's expectations, returned to set the agenda. That company is IBM.

Gerstener's Career And Progress

Lou Gerstener Jr, served as chairman and chief executive officer of IBM from April 1993 to March 2002, when he retired as CEO. He remained chairman of the board through the end of 2002. Before joining IBM, Mr. Gerstner served for four years as chairman and CEO of RJR Nabisco, Inc. This was preceded by an eleven-year career at the American Express Company, where he was the president of parent company and chairman and CEO of its largest subsidiary. Prior to that, Mr. Gerstner was a director of the management consulting firm of McKinsey & Co., Inc. He received a bachelor's degree in engineering from Dartmouth College and an MBA from Harvard Business School. Shop online on Junglee to compare prices offered by many online and offline sellers. Get the best deals now simply go Junglee and check a host of products under the same roof. To make an informed choice you can refer to the customer reviews and star ratings.

Product Features

  • Business And Economics
Product Details
Language English
Publication Date December 16, 2003
Publisher HarperBusiness
Contributor(s) Louis V., Jr. Gerstner
Binding Paperback
Edition Reprint
Page Count 304
ISBN 10 0060523808
ISBN 13 9780060523800
Dimensions and Weight
Product Weight 244.9 grams
Product Dimensions 13.5 cm x 1.7 cm x 20.3 cm
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Overall Rating 4.4 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Reviews
  1. 1 of 1 people found this review helpful
     Nothing eye-opening 8 April, 2013 On
    The biggest problem I find with business books is that they are often contextual and may not serve as a 'Guide to managing companies' if you tried to apply. Thus when a reader expects to read it like a book that fuels knowledge and inspires it merely becomes a factual novel which is very situational. This book also falls in the same category.

    Though one can not take away from Louis all the good things he has done to turn IBM around at one point of time it necessarily doesn't mean those things will hold true if your company or IBM is faced with similar situation. Thus what you can take away is greatly reduced. However the important thing that you can learn is the manner in which successful CEO's think and create business success which remains fairly standard and independent of situations. However you will not find the answer to what to think in this book, rather only how to think about your business.
    Thank you for your feedback Was this review helpful to you?
  2.  Great Book - a must for leaders (and potential leaders) 7 June, 2012 On
    This is a great book on leadership. Reading the book you will realize that Lou didn't really make any strategic changes. He just ensured that IBM became better on execution (which is the key). Lou brought about cultural changes to IBM which were really wide spread and made the company come back from brink.
    Great book!
    Thank you for your feedback Was this review helpful to you?
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