The Mind of the CEO

The Mind of the CEO

The Mind of the CEO

The Mind of the CEO

Synopsis

In these times of intense change, what role should our most important business leaders play in society? How do the CEOs of major corporations define their jobs? How should they define them? These are the questions posed and answered in The Mind of the CEO.

Based on extensive and highly personal interviews with forty chief executives around the world -- among them GE's Jack Welch, AOL's Steven Case, Intel's Andy Grove, Newscorp's Rupert Murdoch, BP Amoco's John Browne, Nokia's Jorma Olilla, and Toyota's Hiroshi Okuda -- The Mind of the CEO takes us on a journey into the innermost thoughts of today's corporate titans and paints a compelling picture of the strategic and daily challenges facing them. Jeffrey Garten's findings are a challenge to those who are suspicious of corporate power, those who believe CEOs should focus only on enriching shareholders, and even to many CEOs who see their jobs much more narrowly. No one interested in the future can afford not to read, think about, and debate this book.

Excerpt

Suppose you had a chance to travel around the world and speak to dozens of the most successful business leaders, one on one. Suppose further that they talked to you frankly about their goals and strategies and what keeps them awake at night. What would you think about these captains of industry who sell trillions of dollars worth of products and services, employ many millions of people and develop our pathbreaking technologies? Would you find them impressive or ordinary? Would you judge their visions bold enough for the changing times? What kind of impact would you think they will have on shaping society in the early twenty-first century? What kind of impact would you think they should have?

In late 1999, I had this very experience. I interviewed forty men and women whose jobs and ideas affect just about every part of our lives. I tried to get into these people's heads. I wanted to understand the environment in which they were operating, the opportunities they saw, the obstacles they faced and what worried them most. I wanted to know what they thought about the challenges posed by the Internet, the New Economy and the management of gigantic corporations spanning many national cultures, and what role they saw for themselves in building the foundations of capitalism in our times. When I was done, I tried to come to . . .

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