Case | HBS Case Collection | June 2007 (Revised June 2008)

GE's Imagination Breakthroughs: The Evo Project

by Christopher A. Bartlett, Brian J. Hall and Nicole Bennett


In September 2003, Jeff Immelt challenged the business leaders at GE to come up with "Imagination Breakthroughs," innovative new projects that would serve as the centerpiece of GE's organic growth initiative. Follows the company as these changes are driven through the business units, focusing on GE Transportation as it launches a series of groundbreaking, green products -from the Evolution Locomotive to the Hybrid Locomotive. The growth process transforms the culture within GE Transportation, leading to a redefinition of the marketing role, the implementation of a "growth leader" profile and new decision-making processes to encourage innovation and risk. Finally, presents a critical decision point, as Transportation executives must decide whether or not to support the high-risk Hybrid Locomotive project.

Keywords: Innovation and Management; Leading Change; Growth and Development Strategy; Business Processes; Organizational Change and Adaptation; Organizational Culture; Environmental Sustainability; Green Technology Industry;


Bartlett, Christopher A., Brian J. Hall, and Nicole Bennett. "GE's Imagination Breakthroughs: The Evo Project." Harvard Business School Case 907-048, June 2007. (Revised June 2008.)