Bob The Builder

He is so over GE: Bob Nardelli is proving his mettle, arming Home Depot with a sharp new image

The summers were hot in western Illinois, but for Bob Nardelli they were also a month too short. "We didn't have a lot of money in those days," says Nardelli, who went to college on a football scholarship and had to start training in August. "I only had two months to work. You had to have jobs that paid well." His solution? "I worked road construction. One year we laid concrete highways. Next summer I worked asphalt." Nardelli's road-crew summers toughened the soles of his feet and taught him a lesson he would never forget: take the most difficult work and...

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