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Changing How the World Does Business

Book Description

For a long time, it looked like FedEx would never get off the ground. The company's early years were an unending series of legal, financial, and operational crises that continually threatened its ability to stay in business. Yet FedEx's leaders and employees were incredibly resourceful and resilient. Pilots used personal credit cards to gas up planes, paychecks weren't cashed, and in one of the most famous episodes, founder Fred Smith literally gambled the company's last remaining funds to keep the planes flying. Becuase Roger Frock was with the companies from the start, he is able to chronicle these real-life hardships and hard-fought triumphs as only an insider can. With humor and insight, he describes how FedEx overcame impossible odds to become one of the world's greatest success stories, a revolutionary company that truly changed the way the world does business.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover Page
  2. Title Page
  3. Copyright Page
  4. Dedication
  5. Foreword
  6. Acknowledgments
  7. Introduction: A Case History of Courage and Tenacity
  8. Part I: From Skepticism to Affirmation: Before May 1972
    1. 1. The Trail of Inspiration
    2. 2. Checking with the Experts
    3. 3. Feeling More Comfortable
    4. 4. This Dog Might Hunt!
    5. 5. An Irrational Decision
    6. 6. Kick the Tires, Light the Fires
  9. Part II: Naïve Optimism: May 1972 to March 1973
    1. 7. A Climate of Chaos
    2. 8. Looking for a Few Good People
    3. 9. Mr. Smith Goes to Washington
    4. 10. The Humble House Gang
    5. 11. Good-bye, Little Rock—Hello, Memphis
    6. 12. The Company Lodestar
    7. 13. More Obstacles
  10. Part III: Within an Inch of Failure: March 1973 to May 1974
    1. 14. Let’s Call it a System Test!
    2. 15. The Marine Corps Boot Camp Mode
    3. 16. An Inauspicious Beginning
    4. 17. Rescue at the Edge of a Precipice
    5. 18. Light at the End of the Tunnel
    6. 19. A Little Help from Our Friends
    7. 20. Summoned to a Special Meeting
  11. Part IV: One for All and All for One: June 1974 to May 1978
    1. 21. A General in the Guerrilla Camp
    2. 22. Fund-Raising—Round Three
    3. 23. America, You’ve Got a New Airline
    4. 24. A Threatened Resignation
    5. 25. Three Division Offices
    6. 26. Just Step out of the Way
  12. Part V: Transformation and Separation: May 1978 to January 1982
    1. 27. From Caterpillar to Butterfly
    2. 28. Mach 1 to Idle
    3. 29. Concordes, Dirigibles, and Separation
  13. Part VI: A New Model for Success
    1. 30. People Are the Wind beneath Our Wings
    2. 31. Changing How the World Does Business
  14. Appendix: Time Line for the Startup, 1971 to 1982
  15. Index
  16. About the Author