Thomas Watson Sr. was a man with an eye for the future.
At the age of 18, he started work as a bookkeeper but eventually made his way to the National Cash Register Company (NCR).
He became general sales manager and was later arrested for illegal anti-competitive sales practices. His conviction was overturned, and he came back to NCR to introduce the slogan, “Think," which International Business Machines (IBM) would later adopt.
Watson became the president of the Computing-Tabulating-Recording Company on May 1, 1914. The firm merged with IBM in 1924 and assumed its name.
As president, Watson built IBM into a powerful corporation, so powerful that (after his death) the federal government launched an anti-trust suit against it in 1952. It was dropped 13 years later.
A month before his death in September 1949, Watson turned the business over to his son, Thomas Watson Jr.
---- Selected Quotes ----
Quotes by Thomas Watson Sr..
Nothing so conclusively proves a man's ability to lead others as what he does from day to day to lead himself.
Published in "Think", the company magazine
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Father, Son & Co.: My Life at IBM and Beyond by Thomas J. Watson Jr..
In this eloquent first-person account of a family drama that changed the face of American business, the man who transformed IBM into the world's large...