CHAPTER 2

Create Customer Value

LEARNING FROM

Lou Gerstner

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Former IBM CEO Lou Gerstner (born in 1942) is said to have been one of the best managers of his generation. Many people rank him alongside Jack Welch, Bill Gates, or Andy Grove. And a look at what Gerstner achieved at IBM, where he masterfully engineered one of the most stunning turnarounds in business history, more than justifies the claim that he genuinely earned his place in such illustrious company. The major lesson to learn from him is how important it is to focus a business totally on generating customer value.

In 1993, IBM was in a bad way—such a bad way, in fact, that Intel CEO ...

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