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Banker to the World: Leadership Lessons from the Front Lines of Global Financeby William R. Rhodes
Synopses & Reviews
Praise for Banker to the World
No one knows better nor has more and better experience across the globe over the last 40 years in diagnosing and managing risks involving sovereign countries and major corporations. In today's world, risk is a major external element in managing the strategy of a business. This book is clearly and simply written. It's a must for all managers and all leaders who aspire to excel in the global game.
--Ram Charan, co-author of the bestseller Execution: The Discipline of Getting Things Done
Bill Rhodes has been much more than a banker. As Citibanks's long-time ambassador to the world, he's been both a diplomat and a surrogate government official--for several countries. Both heads of companies and heads of state have not only sought his advice but relied on him to make deals--and he has delivered time and time again. This little book tells you how. Everyone--or at least everyone that matters in international finance---knows Bill Rhodes. And after you read this amazing memoir, you'll know him, and his undauntable personality, too.
--Alan Blinder, Gordon S. Rentschler Professor of Economics and Public Affairs, Princeton University
...Once the immediate worry of a string of bank failures has abated, Berlin and Paris should then go about the business of restructuring errant countries' bank loans. The global community has been through this before. For a primer, Angela Merkel, Nicolas Sarkozy and David Cameron should read the short, breezily written but instructive book Banker to the World: Leadership Lessons from the Front Lines of Global Finance...by now-retired banker Bill Rhodes, who quarterbacked numerous, complex restructurings.
--Steve Forbes, What's German for TARP, Forbes.com
Rhodes's recollections are lively and richly detailed, replete with glimpses of top-ranking personalities from the world of banking and government interacting under pressure, and they provide a rare window into how these important but normally secretive operations of high-level international finance actually work. . . . Whether America's bankers will run their firms more responsibly in the future remains an open question. They would do well to have people like William Rhodes in their senior management--and, next time around, to listen to them.
--The New York Review of Books
Mr. Rhodes was one of the few members of the financial establishment to sense that the world was on the brink of a calamity in 2007 (most of the prophets of doom were either academic theoreticians or maverick financiers) . . . . In Banker to the World . . . Mr. Rhodes succeeds in hammering home three lessons that we need to take to heart if we are to have any chance of navigating the troubled waters that lie ahead. . . . Bankers to the world like Mr. Rhodes are buffetted from one unpredictable storm to another. They are forever on the verge of being ruined by events. And they rely on the seat of their pants as much as the power of their intellects. Mr. Rhodes is rightly proud of his record in defusing debt bombs and calming financial storms. Let's hope that his successors will be able to make similar boasts in the decades to come.
--The Wall Street Journal
Bill Rhodes has been the consummate insider in international issues for more than three decades. He influenced U.S. and foreign policies on trade, exchange rates, and foreign debt resolution. Leaders around the world have benefited from Bill Rhodes's advice. This book gives readers an honest review of the events and of the political leaders who made the key decisions.
--Professor Martin Feldstein, Department of Economics, Harvard University
Bill Rhodes has made it his life's work to bring common sense to the most serious international problems. On something I know firsthand, the Brady Plan, Bill's steady support and energy were invaluable to its conclusion. This comes as no surprise--that's what he always does.
--Nicholas Brady, former U.S. Secretary of the Treasury
Banker to the World, a book exceptionally well titled, is an illuminating lesson in leadership, diplomacy, vision, and tenacity. It will be required reading at all levels of finance.
--Henry Kissinger, former U.S. Secretary of State
Only one person could have written this book. At Citibank for 50 years, Bill Rhodes was a key decision-maker in the negotiations that took place in indebted countries in the wake of Mexico's default in 1982. He also was one of the few bankers who saw the recent 'Great Recession' coming. His memoir is a must for anyone who wants to recapture the behind-the-scenes details of this important recent era of banking history.
--Robert Mundell, Nobel Laureate and Professor, Columbia University
A must-read. Bill Rhodes has seen it all, and his experiences and lessons learned are invaluable for all those involved in international relations and finance. Some of the lessons are applicable to problems being faced in the Euro zone and other advanced economies today. He was one of the few who predicted what we now call the Great Recession and was called a Cassandra by many at the time. But, like Cassandra, he was right.
--Nouriel Roubini, Cofounder and Chairman, Roubini Global Economics
William Rhodes' book is an important and interesting one, and something that those who want to understand the past and present better would do well to read. A highly talented banker and wise statesman, Rhodes' book is essential reading as a history, business, and life lesson.
S]hould be required reading not only for other bankers, but also for Washington's would-be reformers of Wall Street, but most of all for the ordinary lay citizens dismayed by the persisting panic. . . ..
An absorbing read.
It should be required reading not only for other bankers, but also for Washington's would-be reformers of Wall Stre
Legendary Citigroup executive Rhodes taps into a half-century of achievement to present an inside look at global business and what leaders need to know to succeed. Using real-life examples, Rhodes shows how leaders of any size organization can heal internal rifts, counteract indecision, and manage change globally.
Citis Bill Rhodes taps into a half-century of achievement to reveal what every business leader needs to know about crisis management
About the Author
About the Author
Chairman & President, Citibank
Senior Vice Chairman, CitiGroup
Bill Rhodes is the Senior International Officer for Citi. He has specific responsibilities for client relationships worldwide, as well as for relationships with governments and other official institutions. He is a member of Citi's Senior Leadership Committee.
Mr. Rhodes headed the advisory committees of international banks that negotiated debt-restructuring agreements for Argentina, Brazil, Jamaica, Mexico, Peru, and Uruguay. In 1998, he chaired the international bank group that negotiated the extension of short-term debt of the Korean banking system. In 1999, he acted as worldwide coordinator to help implement the maintenance of trade and inter-bank lines by foreign commercial banks to Brazil. Mr. Rhodes joined Citibank in 1957 after graduating from Brown University.
Mr. Rhodes is a Director of Banamex; a Director of the Private Export Funding Corporation; First Vice Chairman of the Institute of International Finance; Chairman of the Americas Society and Council of the Americas; Chairman of the U.S.-Korea Business Council; a Director of the U.S.-Russia Business Council; a Director of the U.S.-Hong Kong Business Council; a Director of the Korea Society; Vice Chairman of the National Committee on U.S. - China Relations; a Director of the U.S.–China Business Council; a member of South African President Thabo Mbeki's International Advisory Board; a member of the Inter-American Development Banks Private Sector Advisory Board; a member of the International Policy Committee of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce; a member of the Board at the Foreign Policy Association; and a Trustee of the Economic Club of New York. He is also a member of the US-Brazil CEO Forum, a member of the Advisory Council of the Brazilian American Chamber of Commerce, the Council on Foreign Relations, and The Group of Thirty.
Mr. Rhodes is a Governor and Trustee of The New York-Presbyterian Hospital; a member of the Lincoln Center Consolidated Corporate Fund Leadership Committee; and a member of the Metropolitan Museum of Art Business Committee and Chairman's Committee. He is a member of the Board of Overseers of the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown University.
He has received an Honorary Doctorate in Humane Letters from his alma mater Brown University, Chevalier and Officer of France's Legion of Honor, decorations from Poland, Korea, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Venezuela, Colombia, Panama and Jamaica, and multiple awards from not-for-profit organizations in recognition of his contributions to international banking and finance.
Sheridan Prasso (New York, N.Y.) is an award-winning writer, editor and international specialist. Her reportage has taken her across Asia and the world, from China and Japan to India and Indonesia; her articles have appeared in The New Yorker, The New Republic, The New York Times, Travel + Leisure, The Los Angeles Times, and The World Policy Journal.
Currently she is a Contributing Editor at FORTUNE magazine, an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs, and an Associate Fellow at the Asia Society. Sheridan previously spent eight years with BusinessWeek.
Sheridan holds an M.Phil. in Social Anthropology from Cambridge University, and a B.A. in International Affairs from George Washington University. She is active in the Council on Foreign Relations, the Asia Society, the Japan Society, the National Committee on U.S.-China Relations, and the Overseas Press Club.
Table of Contents
Introduction; Lesson # 1: Exhibit bold decisive leadership; Lesson # 2: Envision problems early; Lesson # 3: Act Pro-actively; Lesson # 4: Timely execution; Lesson # 5: Seize opportunities; Lesson # 6: Understand local culture; Lesson # 7: Build concensus, innovate; Lesson #8: Stand up for what is right; Conclusion
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