Who Says Elephants Can't Dance?: How I Turned Around IBM

 
9780007153619: Who Says Elephants Can't Dance?: How I Turned Around IBM

This is CEO Louis V. Gerstner Jr's memoir about the turnaround of IBM and his transformation of the company into the industry leader of the computer age. When Gerstner became CEO of IBM in 1993, shares were in freefall and the company was on the verge of collapse. Hired for his successful management of RJR Nabisco and American Express, Gerstner had no background in technology, but during his seven-year chairmanship, he transformed the company into the leading force of the computer age. In his frank, direct voice, Gerstner recalls the obstacles he faced: the plans to fragment the company; the inconsistent global policies; the stodgy white-shirt hierarchy and inter-departmental competitiveness; and the rapidly declining sales. Within months of joining IBM, Gerstner presented his bold and controversial business strategy. Punitive towards office politics, he revolutionized the company from within, altering an entire corporate culture, divesting billions of dollars in unneeded assets and transforming IBM from a fractured, process-driven business into a nimble, customer-driven enterprise able to respond quickly to the volatile technology market and face down Microsoft and Intel in the internet era. Revealing his tactics step by step, Gerstner spins a narrative that takes the reader behind the curtain into the unbelievable mess he inherited and into the office and mind of a CEO facing the challenge of a lifetime.

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About the Author:

Louis V. Gerstner Jr., formerly head of RJR Nabisco and American Express, is the CEOof IBM.

From AudioFile:

The former CEO of IBM tells the story of his company's amazing comeback from 1993 to 2001. Challenged by customers and employees worldwide and product-service lines that defied integration, Gerstner implemented solutions to turn the company into the integrated business giant it is today. Edward Herrmann's pacing and understated connection with the material in this memoir makes the audio seem compact and relaxed. The writing is also outstanding, lacking excessive pride or self-congratulation, so you don't have to elbow past the author's ego to absorb the many CEO-level insights offered here. An essential volume for anyone interested in technology, large organizations, or IBM's miraculous rebirth under Gerstner's leadership. T.W. © AudioFile 2003, Portland, Maine-- Copyright © AudioFile, Portland, Maine

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