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Reply #9


Response to trailmonkee (Original post)

Tue Oct 9, 2012, 09:20 PM

9. My buddy Jack Welch (a personal encounter)

I'm an old advertising guy who met with Jack Welch in his gigantic office in Fort Fairfield (everyone's name for it) in about 1974 or so. It was just after GE had moved from their longtime offices at 570 Lexington Avenue in NYC, and just before Jack was named Supreme Dickwad of one of the largest companies on earth. I'd worked on the GE corporate account at BBDO for several years, and I left to start my own small ad agency. Our little agency got several small but strategic assignments from GE. Then a small but growing division of GE, GE Credit Corporation, suddenly found itself in the clutches of a small, corrupt New Jersey ad agency, and it had to conduct a very public effort to extricate itself. My tiny little agency, which had completed a few successful projects for GE, was invited to compete for the business, which of course we did. But after several weeks (months?), Jack Welch called off the competition and assigned the business to BBDO without a review. I then wrote Jack Welch the rudest letter I've ever sent to anyone about anything. I said you're hiring BBDO based on it's past performance, but for the last several years, that performance has substantially included my work.
To his credit, Jack had his secretary call me to set up a meeting. In a panic, I called everyone I knew at GE. What should I ask of him? What did I need to know? Nobody I'd worked with at GE had ever met the man, but they all had stories, He's an asshole and a bully I was told -- for example, if you're overweight, he'll call you fat in front of your co-workers and refuse to listen to you. Nice guy. But ultimately, I learned that Jack had his own problem. He is a stutterer, and I was warned to p-p-p-pay no attention. Okay. Fine.
Ultimately, Jack Welch did nothing for my little company. But if I were meeting with him today, based on his cable TV appearances, I'd tell him he sounds like an whining old woman, and that I refuse to listen to anything he has to say -- even if he's overcome his stuttering.
Fuck you, Jack. Take our Six Sigma bullshit and shove it up your ass.
Love, Bill.

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