Welch Way: Leadership in Action

Learn Jack Welch's proven approach to management training, designed to transform teams, get results and advance careers.
  • Lectures 64
  • Video 7 Hours
  • Skill level all level
  • Languages English
  • Includes Lifetime access
    30 day money back guarantee!
    Available on iOS and Android
    Certificate of Completion

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Course Description

Great managers aren't just born. They're made.

As one of the most successful business leaders of all time, Jack Welch knows what it takes to motivate people, get results, and make organizations win.

With Welch Way Management Training, we give managers everything they need to do the same—and do it now. Based on Jack’s own proven approach from the front lines of business, the Welch Way cuts through theory and delivers a playbook of immediately actionable management skills that any manager can bring straight to his or her team.

Transform your team. Accelerate your career. Become a better leader.

What am I going to get from this course?

  • Over 64 lectures and 6 hours of content!
  • This course is divided into several modules focused on mission-critical management skills. Within each module, managers advance through a simple step- by-step process that helps them put what they learn into action, immediately.
  • Step 1: Watch a keynote video from Jack Welch, where he introduces the key topics and highlights the proven practices that will drive your team and your organization to stronger performance.
  • Step 2: Reflect on a few guiding questions to get you thinking about the material ahead. You’re asked to focus on each one and conduct a quick self-assessment before you dive in.
  • Step 3: Immerse yourself in the core content -- detailed insights into Jack’s principles and practices, along with examples of how they apply directly to your organization.
  • Step 4: Download a playbook to get actionable steps and tools for deploying these new skills. As you advance through each section of the Welch Way program, you build a custom Playbook that will help you get the most out of yourself and your team.

What is the target audience?

  • New and experienced managers alike, who wish to broaden their leadership and people management skills to address their organization's most urgent business challenges.

What you get with this course?

Not for you? No problem.
30 day money back guarantee

Forever yours.
Lifetime access

Learn on the go.
Desktop, iOS and Android

Get rewarded.
Certificate of completion


Section 1: Welcome and Course Introduction
Welcome to "Leadership in Action."  In this lecture, Jack introduces Dr. Danny Szpiro, Dean of the Jack Welch Management Institute and co-instructor of the course, setting the stage for the topics that will help you build your management and leadership skills.
This lecture introduces the topics of Section 1 and explains the importance of establishing a clear mission statement and set of supporting values for your organization that will enable you to win.
Navigating through this course is simple and intuitive.  In this lecture, we'll cover the four main course components: (1) Keynote from Jack, (2) Guiding Questions, (3) Core Content and (4) the Playbook. We'll explain how you can use each of these elements to get the most out of your learning experience.  You can go back and review this lecture at any time should you ever need help using the tools or resources.  
Introduction to Jack Welch's four foundational principles for success in business.
This lecture presents Jack Welch's 4 principles (Mission and Values, Candor, Differentiation, Voice and Dignity) in greater detail and lays the groundwork for a deeper explanation in the upcoming lectures. 
Introduction to the Playbook.  The Welch Way is all about putting the concepts you're learning into practice immediately. Each section presents a number of practices to help you take what you are learning and put it into action on the job.  This first set of Playbook activities will help you get maximum impact from the sections that follow.
11 pages
Section 1 of the Playbook, featuring course navigation tips and suggestions on how to get the most out of the course.

Section 2: Mission Statements That Work: Your Roadmap to Winning
This keynote from Jack Welch explains the importance of having a clear and aspirational mission statement.  Jack covers the difference between mission and values and discusses what many companies do wrong when they create mission and values statements - and what you can do to avoid that mistake.
A strong mission statement defines how you and your team will win in business.  The guiding questions in this lecture provide you with an opportunity to evaluate your own organization's mission statement and the values that support it.  It is a great way to get started by thinking through what you are doing right and what you may be able to improve upon.
"What must a mission statement really do, and who is responsible for making sure it does it?"  The answer may surprise you.
"How do you intend to win in business?"  That's the most fundamental question you can ask yourself.  This lecture asks you to take a step back and revisit your mission.  Far too many companies have nice posters on the walls filled with impressive and motivational words that really don't end up changing anything or providing the focus needed to unify teams to be successful.  
Introduction to the Playbook for Section 2, which includes support tools to help you craft a winning mission statement.
18 pages
Playbook for Section 2 containing great ideas and practical suggestions about how you can build a powerful mission statement that can unify your team and drive your business forward.
Section 3: Motivating Your Team with Mission and Behaviors
How do you motivate your team and keep them focused?

Jack discusses the pitfalls and mistakes made by many managers and explains what he has learned about the right ways to get your team firing on all cylinders.  Learn first-hand what it takes to get your team focused on winning.

What can you do as a leader to create and sustain passion for achieving your mission?  Take a look at your own practices and behaviors and ask yourself whether you are doing everything you can to live and breathe the mission every day.
How do you motivate your team to give it everything they've got?  What are they looking for from you as their leader?  This lecture addresses the essential issues around how to bring your mission and values to life.
Instructions on how to use the playbook to get your team excited and focused on achieving the mission.
12 pages
The tools in this section of the Playbook focus specifically on how to motivate your team.  It contains ideas to get you started including planning guides and quick wins, and also features a number of printable support documents that you can take back to work and immediately put to use.
Section 4: Managing Your People for Performance
Companies win when their managers can make a clear and meaningful distinction between top- and bottom-performing businesses and make the appropriate decisions around allocating resources to those businesses with the greatest potential.  In this section we will address several key issues that are essential in building a great team and creating a high performing company.  Specifically we discuss the concept of differentiation, which is the practice of treating people differently based on their performance and how they live the values of the company. 
How does your management practice differ for different members of your team?  Do you have a proven approach that you consistently employ to get the most out of each team member?  What do you do when you have team members that just aren't cutting it?

In this section we will address several key issues that are essential in building a great team, specifically:

  • Defining what makes a great team
  • Differentiating among the various players on the team and providing appropriate coaching to ensure that each team member reaches his or her maximum potential
  • Conducting effective performance evaluations
Introduction to the Playbook activities for Managing Your People for Performance.
15 pages
You've listened to Jack, you've gone through the other lectures, now you need to put it to work.  The Playbook will give you the powerful tools and supports you need to apply these teachings back on the job.
Section 5: Hiring Great People
Hiring great people is critical to building a winning team, but sometimes the process seems like a mix between a root canal and a wild gamble.  In fact, hiring well is one of the toughest challenges that managers face.  Jack shares his experiences (including his own mistakes) about the hiring process and discusses the one rule that every hiring manager must follow. 
Do you have a hiring process that works?  Is it systematic?  How often do you get it right?  What should you be doing to improve the odds of success?  All of these are key questions to ask (and answer) in your quest to become better at building you winning team.
Teams grow and change.  People get promoted, change roles and team members move on.  As the leader, you must recognize that no team remains static (nor should it).  This lecture explores the challenges of building your winning team and offers invaluable lessons on what you must do to make sure you have the best possible players.
Hiring and firing are part of every manager's responsibilities.  Doing it right is tough.  This introduction to the Playbook will give you the tools you need to build your winning team.
15 pages
Packed with great ideas and tips for getting some quick wins, the Playbook for this section will provide some invaluable resources to help you put Jack's teachings into practice. 
Section 6: Getting Every Brain in the Game
You can't build a winning organization alone; it takes a team.  Your job as the leader of that team is to ensure that everyone feels that they have the right to speak their mind and have their thoughts and opinions heard.  In this lecture Jack discusses how to ensure that you've got every brain in the game and that each member of the team is contributing great ideas to make things better every day.
What are you doing right now to ensure that your team has voice and dignity?  Are they comfortable sharing ideas and challenging assumptions?
Good ideas can come from anywhere.  The companies that win are those who encourage open and free dialog among the team.  Organizations where employees feel intimated when they share views that may be counter to the status quo are setting themselves up for their own downfall.  This lecture explores the importance of giving every employee voice and treating everyone with dignity.  These are fundamental human values which, when ignored, have the potential to create an environment of hostility and inefficiency.
Introduction to the Playbook activities for this section.
20 pages
Filled with lots of great ideas and tools, the downloadable Playbook will provide a bridge between the content of the course and what you need to do back at work to get every brain in the game.
Section 7: 5 Qualities of Great Leaders
What makes a leader "great"?  Jack discusses the 5 attributes that great leaders have and that managers should be looking for in everyone they bring into the team. 
Introduction to the guiding questions and self-assessment lectures of this section.
What are you bringing to the game?  Do you have the energy to make things happen? Do you have the kind of passion that inspires your team?  How you lead will be directly reflected in how they perform.  This powerful lecture takes a close look at Jack's "4E's and a P" framework.
Introduction to the Playbook.
17 pages
This section of the Playbook contains more actionable tools and ideas to take back to work.  Download the Playbook to review summary notes, planning tools and game pages to bring the course to life.
Section 8: Candor: Getting to What Matters
This clip is classic Jack.  He tells it like it is and expects you to do the same.  There is no place in business for not being frank and honest.  Anything less than that will slow things down.  Candor is what cuts through the clutter and gives visibility into what is really going on - something that is critical for your team to win.   
Do you speak with candor?  Do you tell it like it is?  Do you share information freely that can speed up the process?  Danny presents some critical questions that call for honest answers.
We all claim that we want others to be straight-up with us, to tell it like it is without sugar coating anything or hiding the facts.  But do you do the same?  Do you avoid delivering bad news?  Do you say "nice things" so that nobody's feelings get hurt?  This lecture addresses the misconceptions that many of us carry around about what candor is and is not, and why it is absolutely critical for the success of your business.
Get ready for another powerful section of the Playbook.  There are lots of great tips to help you get started implementing what you have learned.
12 pages
In this 8th section of the Playbook, you will find more review notes and practical tools to start developing a culture of candor in your organization.  Download it, print it out and put it to work. 
Section 9: Going with Your Gut: How to Make Tough Calls
It goes without saying that you don't get to be a leader without having the guts to make tough calls.  Jack has had to make thousands of tough calls throughout his career, and in many cases these calls had to be made without having perfect information.  But the world isn't perfect and the decisions still have to be made.  Listen to Jack's guidance on what leaders must do to make the tough decisions when they need to be made.
Do you have the courage to act?  Do you have the confidence to evaluate the evidence in front of you and make the best decision you can even when you know that there are uncertainties around every corner?  That's what great leaders have to be able to do. 
Leaders need to make decisions - tough decisions.  Most of the time these choices can't be made by anyone else or by a committee.  Great leaders understand that and they know that with the privilege of leadership comes the responsibility of making decisions that impact the lives and welfare of others.  As a leader, you have to learn how to trust your gut and how to recognize patterns that predict outcomes.  The longer you are in a leadership role, the better you'll get at this, but even new leaders can learn how to recognize and react to patterns when they see them.  This section covers Jack's important lessons in going with your gut.
Wrap up to the lesson and introduction to the Playbook.
11 pages
Content review, tips for some quick wins and support tools to put these lessons into practice are all part of the Playbook for this section.
Section 10: Building a Learning Organization
You've got to come to work every day thinking about how you can make things better.  If not, you'll just end up doing the same things over and over again...and while you're doing this, your competition will be busy building better products, improving their efficiency and taking your customers from you.  Winning organizations are learning organizations.  Jack discusses what companies have to do to keep themselves viable and competitive because the way things were done yesterday is not the way that they will have to be done tomorrow.
Do you constantly look for ways to improve?  Do you ask what could be done better?  Danny sets up several key questions that leaders must be able to answer to build a learning organization and create winning teams.
It's not always about having all the answers.  In fact, great leaders NEVER think they have all the answers.  Great leaders ask great questions and know that it's their job to challenge assumptions and always push for more.  They have to motivate their teams to push and probe and be skeptical about the "usual" ways of doing things.  Great leaders are always inspired by finding a better way and encouraging their teams to do the same.  This lecture will get your creative juices flowing.
Introduction to the Playbook and preview of the great tools to help you build a learning organization.
12 pages
If an company truly is it's people, then those people need to think and grow and learn.  Take a look at the great ideas here for turning your company into a learning organization.
Section 11: Rewarding Risk
There are a lot of misconceptions about risk.  Some companies thrive on it, others avoid it almost completely.  Jack discusses risk and explains not only when it should and shouldn't be taken, but also what companies need to reward it if it is a behavior they are encouraging and which aligns to their mission and values
When should you take risks?  What kind of risks?  How do you guide your teams on the right kinds of risk to take and under what circumstances.
You need to take risks to win, but you can also lose your shirt taking the wrong kinds of risks.  How do winning companies approach risk taking, and what should companies that claim to value (smart) risk taking do when their teams try and fail?  The answer may surprise you.  Jack teaches a radical approach to rewarding risk that has paid huge dividends in building strong teams.  You'd hear directly from him on some ways to foster a culture of appropriate risk taking.
Good risk. bad risks - sometimes it's hard to tell which is which ahead of time.  But what you can manage is how the company treats those who are willing to take the risks and what you can do to improve your approach to risk taking.
13 pages
More tips and tools in this section's Playbook will give you a whole new way to look at risk taking and how to reward it.
Section 12: Celebrating Success
When teams win, they celebrate. But does your company have a culture of celebration?  Why don't companies celebrate more?  Listen to Jack discuss the ways he fostered a culture that cherished victory and supported the people who made it possible.  You'll also hear him discuss some of the classic mistakes that managers make when they try to celebrate.
Do you celebrate enough?  Most team leaders would say no. 
Should work be fun?  Should celebration be part of your culture?  Of course.  Work is too important to not be a place of celebration.  This lecture discusses the common mistakes that many managers make when it comes to celebration and how you can avoid making those same mistakes with your team.
Get ready for a fun playbook filled with great celebration ideas.
10 pages
Lots of great ideas here for team-building and celebrating victory.  Take a look at some of ours to get started and then come up with more of your own.
Section 13: You’re a Leader, Now What?

Congratulations on completing the course!  This lecture contains the course wrap-up and some closing thoughts about next steps.  We hope you have enjoyed Welch Way and that it has been helpful to you in developing your leadership skills.  Now, it's time to put what you've learned to work.

9 pages

This is your final Playbook.  Print it out and add it to the others.  Review it frequently and start putting the teachings into action in your role today.

Instructor Biography

Jack Welch , Founder, Jack Welch Management Institute

Jack Welch is one of the world's most respected and celebrated CEOs, known for his unmatched track record of success, enormous love of people, fierce passion for winning, and unbridled desire to change the world for the better using his unique management practices, which are collectively called the Welch Way.</p>

In his 21 years as CEO, Jack transformed GE into the world's most admired and successful company with his innovative management techniques. Revenues grew five-fold from $25 billion to $130 billion, income grew ten-fold, from $1.5 billion to $15 billion, and the company's market capitalization had a 30-fold increase of more than $400 billion. His achievements are considered epic, and as a result, thousands of companies around the world have adopted the Welch Way.

After retiring from GE in 2001, Jack Welch has only become more active in business. He has written two best-selling business books, Jack: Straight from the Gut and Winning. He actively participates in managing numerous companies as part of a private equity group, and for four years wrote an immensely popular weekly column for BusinessWeek magazine. He is a fixture on TV as a popular business commentator.

Jack Welch has always been defined by his zealous love of teaching and commitment to building leaders. At GE, he created the world's best corporate training center and regularly taught there himself. More recently, he taught a popular course as a visiting professor at MIT's Sloan School of Management, and he regularly teaches seminars to CEOs and senior executives around the world.

Jack Welch is deeply engaged in every aspect of Welch Way Management Training and the Jack Welch Management Institute. 

Instructor Biography

Andrea Backman , Senior Associate Dean, Jack Welch Management Institute

Andréa Backman serves as the Senior Associate Dean at the Jack Welch Management Institute.  She has a PhD from the University of Virginia, an MA from DePaul University and a BA from the Pennsylvania State University.  She has spent her academic career leading initiatives related to online learning, adult learning, and innovation in higher education.

Andréa most recently served as a faculty member and leader in online education at the University of Virginia.  In her role, she was responsible to grow new student populations, ensure academic rigor and quality, lead business development relationships, establish faculty performance goals, and lead instructors in adopting innovative approaches to teaching with technology.

Prior to her role at U.Va., Andréa served as Chief Academic Officer at Rasmussen College, a college with 15,000 students and 22 campuses.  In this position, she was responsible for all academic matters including faculty hiring, development and evaluation, curriculum design, review and assessment, online program development, and student services.

Before joining Rasmussen, Dr. Backman served as the Senior Vice Provost for Faculty Affairs at Strayer University.  In this role, she was responsible for the hiring, training and evaluation for over 3,000 full-time and part-time faculty employees.  During her tenure at Strayer University, Andréa established the University’s virtual Center for Teaching and Learning, developed programs to review and enhance the quality of instruction, implemented credential guidelines to ensure compliance with regional and state accreditation, and established optimized process and systems related to faculty information and faculty success. 

Prior to Strayer, Andréa served as the Director of New Program Development and Academic Approvals at the University of Virginia.  In this role, she oversaw the approval of courses and programs to ensure rigor and compliance with accreditation standards.  She also engaged faculty in the development, implementation and assessment of academic programs and helped to build a diverse portfolio of academic offerings.  While at UVA she worked closely with instructional design staff to build and strengthen online learning programs.

Prior to her tenure at the University of Virginia, she served as the Associate Director of the Center for Distance Education at DePaul University in Chicago.  In this role, Dr. Backman provided strategic leadership for the University’s first online degree program and helped to establish DePaul’s Center for Distance Education.  


Instructor Biography

Dr. Danny Szpiro , Dean of Executive Education, Jack Welch Management Institute

Throughout his career, Danny has applied Welch Way principles as an award-winning teacher and world-renowned expert on financial management, including the areas of management accounting, capital budgeting, post-investment review, and the Balanced Scorecard. He has published on the topic of integrating capital budgeting and corporate strategy, and his teaching material on the use of the case method has been adopted by universities around the world. As Dean of Executive Education, Danny is involved with the design and delivery of JWMI's growing management training and executive development offerings.

Danny was formerly dean of JWMI. Leading up to that role, he was a faculty member and associate dean for Executive Education at the S.C. Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University. He joined Johnson in 2004 as the founding director of The Cornell-Queen’s Executive MBA Program. From 1999 to 2004 he was an associate professor with Queen’s School of Business at Queen’s University in Kingston, Canada, and, for most of that period, the Director of Queen’s National Executive MBA program. Prior to joining Queen’s, he was a faculty member with the John Molson School of Business at Concordia University. Before pursuing an academic career, he spent many years in various international activities in the consumer electronics industry.international activities in the consumer electronics industry.

Danny has led sessions and courses with executives in many development and graduate degree programs, including Executive MBA, Executive CMA and Aviation MBA specializations, in North America and overseas. He earned a BSc from the University of Waterloo, an MBA from Queen’s University, an MSc (International Accounting & Finance) from the London School of Economics, and a PhD from the Richard Ivey School of Business at the University of Western Ontario. In his research and consulting, he has worked with organizations on the use of post-investment reviews and strategic controls in capital investment systems.


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    • Daniel Alvarez

    lessons from on the job at GE

    im just starting the program, but im expecting more examples of the time jack was with GE

    • Axel Zein

    This course means leadning from one of the best managers

    This course represents Jack Welch's leadership principles in a nutshell. I guarantee you will become a better leader after you take this course and apply everything you have learned.

    • PJ Rovinelli

    Great resource

    I found the JW Leadership course an excellent resource and education tool to improve on management. I firmly believe that corporate America has lost their sense of why they are in business, which is to make money and grow. All too often leaders are afraid to make decisions in lieu of not offending people. I believe Mr. Welch's approach is spot on. Having candor, always striving to improve, celebrating success and failures, are all things we see in other industries, specifically sports. And the overall goal is the same: win. Again, this is an outstanding resource with simple concepts that people are just either forgetting about or afraid to implement. Outstanding course.

    • Gregg Leach

    Leadership in Action

    It highlights methods that are very successful if implemented.

    • Gregory D. McVay

    Because you learned how to manege people and have the motivation to grew as a leader and be a better person.

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