Jack Welch, the former General Electric boss and author of the best-selling “Jack: Straight From the Gut,” is writing a how-to book for business people. “Winning” will be published by HarperCollins in 2005.
“‘Winning’ is a book for the people in business who sweat, get their nails dirty, hire, fire, make hard decisions, and pay the price when those decisions are wrong,” Welch said in a statement Tuesday.
Financial terms were not disclosed, but Welch received $7.1 million from Time Warner Trade Publishing for “Jack: Straight From the Gut,” and several publishers were reportedly interested in his new book.
“Jack: Straight From the Gut” sold well despite coming out just before the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, a time when few could have been expected to care about a businessman’s memoirs.
Welch, who retired just four days before the attacks, was widely credited with transforming GE into a multibillion-dollar conglomerate. But over the past couple of years he has been the subject of both personal and professional controversy.
In 2002, he and his wife, Jane, disclosed their plans to divorce, shortly after Harvard Business Review editor Suzy Wetlaufer revealed she had become romantically involved with Welch while working on a story about him.
Wetlaufer is co-writing Welch’s new book.
Meanwhile, the divorce papers said GE paid for a variety of personal expenses, including food, wine, cook and wait staff, laundry, and furnishings. In addition, the company provided for Welch’s travel expenses, entertainment, private car and driver, and computer equipment, the documents said.
A GE spokesman said at the time that Welch would reimburse the company for the value of any services and facilities he had used since his retirement — an amount Welch estimated at $2 million to $2.5 million.