Sunday, November 06, 2005

Saving General Motors: 101

I have a candid admission: I like General Motors. No apologies; I like the General!

General Motors,' vehicles have graced everything American: from the movies to racing and from television shows to mod-shows; Detroit is represented with gusto and enthusiasm but having admitted to that bias, I must say the General is in serious trouble: some may say the icon is headed for Chapter 11 or worse yet, Chapter 13, if all the pundits and nay-sayers are to be believed.

Another admission: I happen to believe General Motors will go into bankruptcy protection within 18 months in order to shed some of its dead weight, and to reorganize so that the company will continue to have a meaningful life in these USA.

But my personal feelings aside on both fronts: the love and the bankruptcy; I am going to offer an approach here that, can not only save General Motors but will permit future growth that will satisfy both its share holders and provide good jobs to the community.

Mr. Chairman:

I won't bore you with the analysis of your company's problems becasue they are well documented; the ultimate here is diminishing market share but never fear.

Here are my suggestions.

01: Make an infomercial about how a car is made. Begin with the concept, walk the audience through the design stages before prototype and finally production.

Make it and show it. Buy time on TV and show it. Offer copies to those who want them; ask for handling and shipping but make it availabel to the general public.

I know, you know how a car is made. I know, you know that your engineers know how a car is made. I know, you know that the general public know how a car is made.

I know, I know, I know!

But sir, this not the purpose of this infomercial; its purpose is for the parents to get this information in the hands of the young. That's right, you are about to rebuild the techno-class in this town, not from the point of view of college but from the common kid on the street.

The kids need to know about the lead time it takes from conception to reality; the unforseen problems, scheduling and any other business that will crop up.

An infomercial would do that!

02: Scrap the current brands!

That's right! Get the rid of the current brands that you have. Buick, Chevrolet, Pontiac and Cadillac: Let them go! These were useful in the past as you had patriotic buyers but these names mean nothing in the global market.

Create three divisions in place those brands: Luxury, Trucks and General Motors. These brands are self explanatory and for the sake of conversion, I would allow for the retention of the word Cadillac (for use in the luxury division) but that is neither her nor there; Three divisions is all that you need for streamlining your operation.

The choice of retaining the GM brand is obvious; it could help build brand loyalty to the corporation but please DO NOT refer to the name as GM but rather call it by the full name: General Motors.

I am incline to keep this name but if another can be found which could achieve the same objective, then by all means we should use it but I like the words: General Motors. It has a nice sound to it.

The Truck Division will emcompass all trucks from the smallest to the largest, including the bus division but even so, there will be ample room for collaboration within these classifications.

With the first two steps, Mr. Chairman: (i.e): The creation of the infomercial, the scrapping of division names and the creation of those three simple divisions; Luxury, General Motors and Trucks, you are on your way to revitalizing one of the best companies in the world.

In my second part, I shall give further ideas on how to accomplish this goal.


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