I’ve been reading Jack Welch’s Winning.
Though Jack Welch is one mean and selfish man, Winning is a challenging and rewarding testament to Neutron Jack’s way of doing business. Welch’s philosophy of promoting the top 20% and firing the bottom 10% in a large company is unbelievably Darwinian, even cruel. Welch even runs his personal life the same way – at sixty years of age he writes about co-author and third Suzy "having taught me the meaning of love". Frankly, Welch has grown up children – it’s a bit late to be discovering love. Rediscovering would have been far more tactful.
But let’s leave the man behind and return to Welch’s Spartan philosophy of leaving the crippled employees on the mountaintop to perish in the night.
When you read his book, however, you can see how this would work in a company which hires just extremely competitive types. Such people enjoy seeing others thrown down the well. It’s a bit of the mob waiting for the witch to be drowned. Welch is appealing to primal nature here, the law of the jungle. The hunter who cannot run fast enough is culled from the tribe and the tribe is stronger as the weakest members can neither survive nor reproduce.