What They Would Love to Ask Jack

Readers have come up with their own questions for -- and about -- GE's colorful, controversial ex-CEO

On Feb. 3, book publisher HarperCollins announced that former General Electric (GE ) CEO Jack Welch will, in early 2005, publish his second book, this time writing with his fiancee, former Harvard Business Review editor Suzy Wetlaufer. Winning is to be a "how-to" that tackles nitty-gritty business questions, many suggested by audience members at Welch's frequent lectures.

In a Feb. 9 BusinessWeek Online story on the book (see BW Online, 02/9/04, "Between the Covers With Jack and Suzy"), we invited readers to submit their own questions for Welch. Here is some of what they asked:

Cleaning Up Halliburton?

Please ask Jack Welch if he would be interested in succeeding David Lesar as CEO of Halliburton (HAL ). Something dramatic needs to be done to clean up the public image of this troubled company, and Jack just might be the right guy for the job.

Dan Herlihy


The One That Got Away

Jack, how did you let Cox (COX ) out of the cable-television merger deal with General Electric? Had that gone through, GE would have been the biggest cable-TV and communications company in the world today.

Paul Schonewolf

Schenectady, N.Y.

The Meaning of Love?

In the recent paperback of Jack: Straight From the Gut, Jack Welch states that Suzy Wetlaufer "has taught me the meaning of love." I'm wondering why, since Welch is now 68, it took him so long to understand this concept? What does he think his first wife of 28 years was doing when she bore him his four children?

More to the point, how does he think that comment sounds to his four biological children and grandchildren? And what about his doting mother who he always talks about -- did she not teach him the meaning of love? Words have meaning and power. How can one take anything the man says seriously under such circumstances?

Ava Turner

New York City

For more about what Welch is up to since he retired, see this extended BW Online Video Views segment with the ex-CEO of GE and BW Editor-in-Chief Steve Shepard.

Editors Note: Got a question for Jack Welch? A comment about him? The floor is still open. Send your questions and comments to BusinessWeek Books Editor Hardy Green. We'll publish the best ones online for Welch and the world to see.

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