Other Editorials

Bottom Line

Jim Dollinger
Sunday, May 3, 2009

After years of watching GM decline, I am firmly convinced that the troubles at General Motors lie squarely at the feet of management. It is customary to hear every excuse under the sun, ie. wages, health care, pensions, exchange rates, material costs, government regulations, the weather, fuel prices, the economy, credit crisis, and on and on. Never is the blame pointed out as failed leadership.

GM has cut thousands of employees, closed plants across America, taken away benefits from retirees, sold assets with reckless abandon, and borrowed to the hilt. Now the solution of the day is eliminating dealers, how tragically wrong is that? These people running GM really have no clue what to do and take ill-advised actions in the name of "reorganizing" and "turning around". Their strategies don't work and yet, they are still in charge. Nonsense!

Where would GM of today be had the company heeded the advice of John DeLorean, Ross Perot, and Jerry York? For that matter, what if they had implemented Return to Greatness? Even bankruptcy can't save this bunch. All that will happen is a lessened liability structure, then back to business as usual with Mark LaNeve and company continuing the most methodically mundane marketing. Wait, make that asinine merchandising.

It's time for people to wake up and realize that what needs to happen is a complete restructuring of GM management, and by that I mean a housecleaning in the executive suites. That's where the trouble lies, not with tens of thousands of loyal employees, retirees, suppliers, dealers, and salespeople.

It's really our only hope.