Now featuring a New Preface on The Eurozone Debt CrisisPraise for Banker to the World
"Bill Rhodes is a legend in banking...this slim and very readable book is his account of the lessons he learned...his successes are many and genuine, and we need to know how he did it."
- Financial World, July 2012
About the Book
In more than five decades with Citi, William "Bill" Rhodes, the firm's former senior vice chairman and senior international officer, has worked with senior business leaders, statesmen, and strongmen and brokered immense financial deals while looking across the table at finance ministers... and up the barrels of guns trained on him. He has earned the cooperation of Fidel Castro over cigars and the admiration of Rupert Murdoch, who said of Rhodes, "By dogged hard work, Bill forms important and great relationships. Everyone knows Bill. Everyone trusts Bill."
From these and other experiences, Rhodes has learned a lifetime of lessons about managing amid crises and, more important, how to lead prudently, decisively, and effectively to prevent crises from ever happening in the first place. In Banker to the World, Rhodes presents his collected wisdom, best-practices, analysis, and anecdotes in one essential volume on the creation of value through leadership and on the importance of leading by one's values.
Dramatically illustrated by more than two dozen examples, Rhodes's principles offer an excellent foundation for leaders at all levels. Having honed his skills in high-level negotiations around the world including those with the Sandinistas, heads of state, and corporate CEOs in situations ranging from the opening of post-apartheid South Africa and the defusing of the Latin American "debt bomb" to the forestalling of the nationalization of Citi assets in Venezuela - Rhodes dispenses invaluable advice, including:
Lead boldly and decisively: Know when to disregard caution for caution's sake and always insist on a neutral negotiating atmosphere.
Anticipate problems by visualizing their impact: Get ahead of risk by taking a comprehensive view of potential obstacles.
Confront problems directly and proactively: When faced with a critical situation, going directly to its epicenter is what turns a crisis into an opportunity.
You may not be presented with challenges such as restructuring a nation's multibillion-dollar debt or dealing with Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe. But in Banker to the World, Bill Rhodes gives takeaway lessons on leading with character, tact, and determination that any manager, executive, or government official will use again and again to evaluate challenges, anticipate responses, and be more decisive in navigating crises of any size.