Executive Suite (1954) Poster

William Holden: McDonald Walling



  • McDonald Walling : The force behind a great company has to be more than the pride of one man; it has to be the pride of thousands. You can't make men work for money alone - you starve their souls when you try it, and you can starve a company to death the same way.

    McDonald Walling : [picking up a small, flimsy table]  And that's when we started doing things like this: the KF line. Walt, are your boys proud when they go out and sell this stuff? When they know the finish is going to crack, the veneer split off and the legs come loose?

    Loren Phineas Shaw : Wait a minute, wait a minute. That's priced merchandise - it serves a definite purpose in the profit structure of this company. We're not cheating anyone.

    McDonald Walling : Ourselves!

    Loren Phineas Shaw : At that price, the customer knows exactly what he is going to get.

    McDonald Walling : This!

    [flips the table over, and easily tears off one of its legs] 

    McDonald Walling : This is what Tredway has come to mean!

    [violently throws the leg against the wall] 

    McDonald Walling : And what do you suppose the people think of us when they buy it? How do you suppose the men in the factories feel when they make it? What must they think of a management that is willing to stoop to selling this kind of junk in order to add a dime a year to the dividend?

  • Loren Phineas Shaw : After all, that's only part of our business. Eventually we can cut down on the line...

    McDonald Walling : We'll drop that line! And we'll never again ask a man to do anything that will poison his pride in himself or his work.

  • McDonald Walling : We'll have a line of low-priced furniture, a new and different line - as different from anything we're making today as a modern automobile is different from a covered wagon. That's what you want Walt, isn't it - what you've always wanted? Merchandise that will sell because it had beauty and function and value - not because the buyers like your scotch or think that you're a good egg. The kind of stuff that you, Jesse, will feel in your guts when you know it's coming off your production line. A kind of product that you will be able to budget to the nearest hundredth of a cent, Shaw, because it will be scientifically and efficiently designed. And something you will be proud to have your name on, Miss Tredway.

  • McDonald Walling : If Bullard calls a meeting, he's got a good reason. He's a big man.

  • McDonald Walling : Turn your back on experimentation and planning for tomorrow because they don't contribute to dividends today, and you won't have a tomorrow...

  • McDonald Walling : We were hating him and all the time he was laying there, dead.

  • Mary Blemond Walling : Don, there's still a chance in there? Nothing's impossible, remember?

    McDonald Walling : You're funny.

    Mary Blemond Walling : Am I?

  • [last lines] 

    [Mr. and Mrs. Walling enter an elevator] 

    McDonald Walling : Hey, by the way, who won today?

    Mary Blemond Walling : We did.

  • McDonald Walling : [Speaking of Avery Bullard]  The greatest man I've ever known.

  • McDonald Walling : In your own words, Shaw, I have only one interest around here - the good of this company.

  • Ed Benedeck : Where do we go from here Mr. Walling? Four years since we've done anything good like that

    [refers to the framed display picture of a former quality made bench produced by the Tredway furniture company that Mr. Walling was silently and sadly gazing upon] 

    Ed Benedeck : This is what we make now

    [motions to the table on the production line] 

    Ed Benedeck : - the K.F. line. Look at it.

    [walks over to it] 

    Ed Benedeck : I remember when Mr. Bullard used to come down here, see stuff not half as bad as this, and just pick it up and smash it against the wall.

    [said as he too picks up the table by a leg and slams it back down] 

    Ed Benedeck : 'Not good enough!' he used to yell. 'Not good enough!'... huh, not good enough. Why did he allow it Mr. Walling? What happened to him? What's gonna to happen to us?

    McDonald Walling : [Shakes his head in unfortunately sad agreement and walks away] 

See also

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