- Bill Spent 35 years working for General Electric Company.
Throughout this period Bill had a number of different jobs for GE at various
- Bill describes his job as consulting, but at the time the field of business
consulting did not exist. One of the primary things Bill did
was create teams made up of members of different sectors of the company such
as manufacturing, marketing, engineering etc.. This would facilitate
communication between the different sectors of production and with GE's
management. I asked Bill if he had
been trained to do this and he laughed, saying that, "no one had heard
of this kind of work back then."
- Bill's first job at GE was in Asheboro, NC, at the small appliances
plant. He worked at the plant for 5 years. One of the major
products that was produced in the plant was the electric blanket, which was
very popular in those days.
- Next, Bill was sent to New York City to work in GE's corporate
office. Bill worked as a consultant dealing with matters such as
quality control. Quality control was the branch determining the
percentage of defective products being produced. Bill described
quality control as his "hook" or a skill or his. He was good
at finding ways to increasing the company's production of quality.
When Bill was working on quality control of GE's headlamps for cars he helped
to reduce the number of defective lamps produced from 20,000 breaks per
million to 500 breaks per million.
- While Bill worked in New York City Bill commuted from his house in White
Plains by train. During one very eventful commute all of New York City
experienced a blackout, and Bill spent the whole night in Grand Central
Station with many other commuters. He described the occasion as like a
big party. He also explained that at that time New York was much safer
and therefore being stuck in the train station all night was not worrisome
- In 1966 Bill was transferred to GE's General Learning department in
Washington D.C. This was an educational organization that was an
affiliate of both GE and Time.
- After three years in Washington D.C. Bill was sent to work in Cincinnati,
OH on GE's aircraft engine division.
- In 1972 Bill was transferred to Fairfield, CT where GE's corporate
headquarters was at the time. He worked in the corporate headquarters
in Fairfield for the next 10 years. When Bill retired many of his
clients wanted him to continue his consulting work for them, so he set up a
small firm to continue doing consulting work.
The text, video, audio, and website are the result of interviews conducted byJeff Libersat,
Davidson College Class of 2002, in the Fall of 2001.
© 2009 Kristi S. Multhaup, Ph.D. | Davidson College | Davidson, NC 28035 | Phone: 704.894.2008
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