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Banker to the World: Leadership Lessons From the Front Lines of Global Finance Hardcover – April 4, 2011

4.2 out of 5 stars 22 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

William R. (Bill) Rhodes is the retired senior vice chairman and senior international officer of Citigroup and Citibank. He is President and CEO, William R. Rhodes Global Advisors, LLC; senior advisor, Citi; and professor-at-large, Brown University. Bill gained a reputation for international financial diplomacy in the 1980s and 1990s as a result of his leadership in helping manage the external debt crises that involved developing nations and their creditors worldwide. He has since served as a trusted advisor to governments, financial officials, and corporations worldwide. He is a director of many for-profit and not-for-profit organizations and has received numerous decorations and honors from governments and institutions.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Education; 1 edition (April 4, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0071704256
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071704250
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #194,962 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
The book is an accurate description of facts as they happened in the world of international finance over the past decades, the tensions involved and the lessons learned. Many of these lessons are extremely applicable today, especially within the European context. It is easy to read and for those who are interested in global financial issues and the key leaders behind the crucial decisions, it is a must read. Bill was at the center of these events and his common sense proved fundamental in many of these situations, as recognized by numerous global leaders.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Two and a half years ago, Bill Rhodes warned the Europeans of an impending euro sovereign debt crisis. The Europeans scoffed and said that could only happen in the emerging markets - not in Europe! Fast-forward, here we are in a disastrous and far-reaching eurozone debt crisis. Bill Rhodes' "Banker to the World" is a fascinating account by a seasoned "Mr. Fix-It" - and we all can learn from his vast experience of re-structuring sovereigns. The anecdotes and behind-the-scenes accounts from a formidable expert are fascinating. Rhodes' fans include Paul Volcker (who wrote the Foreward), Henry Kissinger ("A Must Read at All Levels of Finance") and Martin Feldstein - and me, as well. A great read - with both history, and lessons, to be learned - all applicable now - in Europe!
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Format: Hardcover
Really GREAT. A front row seat to every major financial crisis, sitting next to the man who lead the negotiations. The lessons learned are invaluable. Bill
Rhodes is a living legend in the world of global finance. An important, enjoyable - MUST READ -especially if you want to understand what is going on in the Eurozone today"
David X Martin
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Format: Hardcover
Bill Rhodes's Banker to the World: Leadership Lessons from the Front Lines of Global Finance is a must-read for those who want to genuinely understand how the recent global financial crisis emerged and what are the genuine qualities needed for successful global bank leadership. Bill Rhodes played a pivotal personal role in the financial crises of the 1980s and 1990s such as as the Latin American Debt Crisis and many others. The key to his success then and it remains today is his extraordinary networking ability, his extensive relationships and the trust he had engendered throughout his career. Unlike many of today's bankers who are focused only on their bonuses and what they can get Bill Rhodes epitomises traditional long-term banking values built around trust and relationships. In this book he demonstrates the real value bankers can achieve through building trust and relationships and not the greed culture of reecent years. For those who want to believe in what bankers can achieve Bill's book is a must, the only hope is that the the new generation of bankers apply Bill's traditional values and approach, he is a model banker at a time when the important role of banking has been seriously subverted.
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Format: Hardcover
While there have been numerous books written on both past and recent financial crises, none seem to capture the front line experience the way Bill Rhodes does in his book Banker to the World.

What makes this book particularly unique is the authors ability to not only recall his very real and personal involvement in a wide array of major historic global financial crises, but more importantly his ability to succinctly reflect on them and provide the reader practical leadership lessons that can be easily applied to modern day challenges, both big and small. As a result, this book lends itself to academia, as well as seasoned financial professionals. It would also be hoped, that those who actually make policy would take the time to read this book.

The plethora of valuable information means this book deserves a spot in your personal library, as it will certainly stand the test of time since it draws upon decades and decades of source material written by one of the best minds of our time on the subject of financial crises.
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Format: Hardcover
The lessons that Bill Rhodes lays out in this book are honest, comprehensive and as applicable today as they were when Bill was using them to good effect during his career at Citibank. What makes this book worth reading is that he goes beyond the pedantic and academic to breathe life into those lessons with some fascinating insights into how high finance works at a very personal level. Bill's career spanned an era when banks understood that whatever proprietary challenges they faced, there were also times that they needed to stand together to address bigger structural issues for the good of the global financial system. The conduct of many banks in the aftermath of 2008 would suggest that sense of collective and common interest has seriously dissipated. Hopefully, younger bankers reading a book like this will be reminded of what can be achieved when international financial institutions come together to address issues greater than their own profitability.
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Format: Hardcover
As it is extremely rare (or impossible) for one person to single-handledly accomplish a truly immense undertaking, as will always be the case with global finance and international trade matters, consensus-building becomes the most key aspect of such strategic processes. It takes a bold leader, with exceptional leadership skills, to navigate these waters and get all of the important players on-board and on track to achieve the same end. Bill Rhodes is clearly such a leader who has played a significant and decisive role in brokering some of the major global financial deals of our time, as demonstrated coherently and clearly in Banker to the World. Bill has had a pervasive influence on U.S. and foreign policies on trade and provided immense foresight into global debt issues, perhaps even foretelling the recent debt crisis we faced here in the U.S. The various examples in his book cogently demonstrate his tenacious approach to some of the most convoluted and vexing financial issues we have faced to-date. Yet his common-sense tactics and people-oriented, consensus-building skills are equally transferable to the more mundane financial matters that most financial professionals face on a routine basis. Thus, I believe this book is an invaluable read for any one in the financial sphere and, I would even go so far as to recommend it to transactional lawyers and all others involved in negotiating deals. It offers tremendous insight into the art of negotiation, most crucial of which is consensus-building, as important issues almost always involve disparate entities with conflicting interests and agendas. Read Bill's book and make it your go-to source not just for lessons from historically significant events, such as the Great Recession, military Keynesianism and Mexico's default in 1982 but, instead, for a daily dose of inspiration as well as developing your own leadership skills.
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