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Discussion Starter #1
Shakeup or repositioning at GM has Rick Wagoner taking over all North American duties and Lutz concentrating on global resources.

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Source: Reuters News Agency
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GM CEO to Take Over N.American Operations
Monday April 4, 10:23 am ET

DETROIT (Reuters) - General Motors Corp. (NYSE:GM - News) said on Monday that Chief Executive Rick Wagoner will assume the leadership of automotive operations in North America, where the car company has been losing money and market share.

Bob Lutz, chairman of GM North America, and Gary Cowger, president of GM North America, will relinquish their roles and focus full-time on global responsibilities. Lutz will lead GM's global product development activities, and Cowger will focus on global manufacturing and labor.

Lutz, Cowger to Focus Full-Time on Global Assignments; Wagoner Assumes Leadership of GM North America
Monday April 4, 10:00 am ET

Here's More:

DETROIT, April 4 /PRNewswire/ -- General Motors Chairman and CEO Rick Wagoner announced a series of senior leadership changes today as the next step in transforming GM into a globally integrated business.

Vice Chairman Bob Lutz and Group Vice President Gary Cowger will focus full-time on their global responsibilities: Lutz on leading GM's global product development activities, and Cowger on global manufacturing/labor.

Lutz and Cowger will relinquish their current roles at GM North America, and Wagoner will assume leadership of GMNA, while retaining his current positions.

"Given the challenges we face in North America, it makes sense for me to assume control of GMNA's day-to-day operations and shorten the lines of communication and decision-making," Wagoner said.

"At the same time, as we look at our global business, it's clear that the two areas most critical to our future success are achieving excellence in every product we develop, and doing it with the most competitive manufacturing system. And Bob and Gary are our two executives most experienced and skilled in these key areas."

Wagoner noted that GM has operated much of its business on a global basis for several years now and has made considerable progress in better utilizing its global resources and capabilities to serve regional and local markets more effectively.

"We've come very far on the long journey from our traditional standalone business model for each major national market, and more recently for each of our four regions. Now's the right time to accelerate the global integration of two of our most important functions, product development and manufacturing/labor," he said.

Today's move follows last month's announcement that GM had appointed several executives to global positions in product development.

"With the ongoing globalization of GM's product development organization, and the implementation of our global architecture strategy, Bob felt he needed to devote his efforts to product development full-time, and I agreed," Wagoner said. "I'll continue to value his business advice and support, but Bob's legacy at GM will be in our future cars and trucks. It makes sense for him to devote his full energies to that critical task."

Wagoner noted that GM has made tremendous progress in implementing its Global Manufacturing System around the world, including industry-leading health and safety performance, higher quality and productivity.

"Now, the next stage is to enhance our manufacturing flexibility globally and more effectively integrate our global manufacturing capacity. It's logical to have Gary focus his full efforts on that," he said. "He has worked effectively around the world, and understands the opportunities and challenges of leveraging our manufacturing capabilities.

"In manufacturing, one of our biggest challenges is our lack of cost- competitiveness in the United States, which is due to our legacy costs, especially the ever-increasing burden of high health-care expenses," Wagoner said. "Addressing this challenge in a fair and equitable way requires close work with our union partners, in addition to our ongoing work with government and health-care providers. With his vast experience in labor relations, Gary is the ideal person to do this."

"I look forward to working closely with an energized, aggressive GMNA team, including several recently appointed new leaders, to move faster on the path toward re-establishing profitability in GM's largest regional business unit," Wagoner said.

"I feel confident today's moves will accelerate GM's transition to a globally integrated automotive business that takes full advantage of our global expertise and delivers the kind of products that our customers expect in each local market, as well as the business results that our shareholders deserve."
 

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Wants to be closer!

I saw the same announcement, not sure other than what Mr. Wagoner said, and that is to be "closer" to the day to day operations during these challenging times.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
how much of a bean-counter background does Rick have and should we be worried about even more projects becoming stillborn? Or is iy in a way good news overall for GM that they will concentrate on building world cars at competetive prices, at the expense of the UAW?
 

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Good or Bad?

achieftain said:
...good news overall for GM that they will concentrate on building world cars at competetive prices, at the expense of the UAW?
That is a very good question.... it is common knowledge that GM wants to someday be only in car assembly business... :eek:
 

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achieftain said:
how much of a bean-counter background does Rick have and should we be worried about even more projects becoming stillborn? Or is iy in a way good news overall for GM that they will concentrate on building world cars at competetive prices, at the expense of the UAW?
The UAW has been operating at the expense of GM for decades. Anyway, this is a good thing. Waggoner will watch the beans, Lutz will watch the product. They had Bob stretched too thin before.
 

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Dark Ages Gone?

GMinTheDriveway said:
The UAW has been operating at the expense of GM for decades.
Whoa… you apparently don’t understand why unions were really formed. Maybe it is because you are way too young to know or never read about Sit-Down-Strikes back in 1937!

GM and all the other auto makers had the upper hand in everything you did. If you weren’t related to your boss you were fired if you even looked at him wrong, or if you had to go to the bathroom guards were posted there to make sure you were there for that reason only.

Management would constantly send you home if the line broke down. Made you go home after only two hours or made you work long 12-16 hour days. No short work weeks no O.T. no eating or having coffee on the job. The lines never stopped - safety was never made a top priority.

If you helped the boss out and painted his house, washed his car, cashed his checks you would be able to work a full week. It was common that workers where laid-off for weeks and months at a time. You wouldn’t enjoy the wage & health benefits and retirements that not only union people have but salary enjoy too!

Other shops i.e. Toyota give their workers great wages & benefits to keep them happy and the unions out of their shops. If there weren’t unions big business would have never given the work force what they have today.

Ps. Whew I can go on and on... getting off my soap box for now.
:brentil:
 
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