GE Work-Out

Creating the spirit of a start-up firm in a large and complex enterprise


GE Work-Out

Goals  ▪  Problems Addressed

5 Growth Dimensions

7 Steps  ▪  5 Sessions



Jack Welch advice business quotes

One of the ways we'll know that Work-Out has been successful is that my style of leadership
will no longer be tolerated in this company.

Jack Welch




The GE Work-Out is a revolutionary method for busting bureaucracy & attacking organizational problems.

Developed at GE in the late 1980's, the GE Work-Out is being used with dramatic results at hundreds of organizations world wide.

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GE Work-Out Success Stories





GE Capital: Leaner Reporting

GE Capital used to give vehicle fleet leasing customers a 500-pages report of monthly usage with all backup detail. No customer read this huge report however.

This problem was brought up at a Work-Out session.




It was decided to give customers much shorter 30-page summary reports not all backup detail. Implementation of this decision resulted in less paper, postage, labor savings from less handling, reductions in computer processing time and customer queries, and US$100,000 in savings.

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GE Airspace: Surplus Furniture Sale

For years, GE discarded their slight used, but still in good working condition, office furniture by paying to ship it to dumps & landfills.


Encouragement of Lateral Thinking at GE Work-Out

Six Sigma at GE




A software project engineer, trying to find "a better way, every day" in the spirit of Work-Out, suggested putting the furniture up for sale through an intermediary company. He called several 3rd party companies, and they said they would love to take the shipment from GE and would pay cash to GE for the furniture and even allow the employees to buy the furniture at favorable rates vs. the general public.




Once the employee heard that a solution was possible, he called a GE facilities manager and told him what he had discovered. The facilities manager got excited by this opportunity and went off to discuss details with a 3rd party firm. Shortly, a win/win solution for all was finalized.

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Lessons from Business Legends e-book PowerPoint slide deck for teachers  

Encouragement of Lateral Thinking at GE Work-Out
Work-Out encourages people to toss out any idea, no matter how minor, how crazy, how seemingly impossible. And the process helps people learn how to think laterally and , think "out-of-the-box", build on each other's ideas, and combine ideas...





Work-Outs in Other Companies

Main source of information: GE Work-Out: Accelerating Decision-Making and Effective Execution, Gagnon Associates





Leominster Credit Union, USA

Gagnon Associated helped Leominster Credit Union to implement Work-Out. "Since this was a process that directly involved employees in helping us find better ways to do the work they are closest to every day, Gagnon Associates worked with and through cross-functional, problem-solving teams of LCU people," says Barbara Mahoney, Vice President, Human Resources, LCU. "As a result, this process broke down silos within the company, and improved teamwork and collaboration across the credit union. Just as importantly, perhaps, it has brought understanding among our people of how changes they make can impact other areas of the Credit Union and, based on this, how important it is to share information / policy / process changes across functions. In short, it has made us a more aware and better-functioning team as an organization."

Asia Pacific Philips Consumer Electronics, Singapore

Asia Pacific Philips Consumer Electronics, Singapore, used the GE Work-Out Process to bring greater transparency to their supplier relationships and to support a seamless working method within their supply chain. Within two years, the company conducted over 20 sessions, giving double-digit % savings from every event.






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