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GM’s Akerson: Employees are ‘agents of change’

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  1. General Motors0:08, 0:19, 0:45
  2. GM0:02, 1:18, 3:24
  3. Dan Akerson0:03, 0:17, 3:22
  4. Chevy Malibu4:48
  5. Ninth Ward0:14
  6. Automotive News0:05, 8:53
  7. spending cuts7:58
  8. Green sheet7:05
  9. recognition system6:43
  10. bell labs7:01

Thu, 6 Dec 2012|

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

Not a part one of our discussion with GM CEO Dan Akerson he sat down with the Automotive News last week. For progress report on General Motors are Leslie Allen has more. You can't just dictate from the thirty Ninth Ward one thing's pretty clear Dan Akerson wants cultural change at General Motors. I hear these stories of what it was like five in ten years ago with the personalities and egos which analysts tower. There is a there is a harmony in any case. Synchronous. Aspect to the way that this company is working that really. Makes me proud. Akerson says he's kind of events that people are starting to feel empowered -- General Motors. They are agents of change. That they aren't held back by. Well that's way we've always done it thinking there and and and and is it I don't you can bring me and I could be gone tomorrow. The besieged and planet. And it goes in and nothing. Motivates people like. Of bankruptcy. And the anxiety and fear and quite frankly the embarrassment and the disappointment of it and I would say. This generation of GM employees is highly motivated. To improve. Not repeat the mistakes of the past. And -- from our fresh thinkers that. -- on his agenda. An aggressive schedule of vehicle launches into money thirteen. Including on versions of GM's pickups and suvs. We've had the quote unquote oldest portfolio in the marketplace that will radically change over the next twelve. 24 months. But the 64 year old actress and says he likes challenges. A big one. Bringing GM's once recommended back office operations into alignment. We need to fix some fundamentals here and we are in that will make us a much better competitor. In ways that. The car guys never could've imagined. How deep will it go this will maybe surprise you we re able if necessary to tell you the profitability by car by -- -- by then number. That's a powerful thing to say. One of his priorities besides continuing to streamline product development. -- to bring information technology and house again IT. A small. What could be written on hi -- General Motors angles back to 1980. Whenever we bought EDS. Strategic error. To see to buy it basically push all your people. Into this. EDS. This navy veteran compares farming out IT. -- the military hiring another country to do the work of the Marines. Information technology he says should be at the core of an automaker just like engineering or design. In our next installment. There's no other car like this ever. Akerson talks technology. Products and his goals for Cadillac. For Auburn is now I'm Leslie Allen. About a year after Dan Akerson took the reins at GM in late twenties had he famously declared. I am not a car guy. Despite that there are some products even a non car guy can get excited about. Here's Leslie L with part two of our exclusive interview with -- Near the top of that person's list. The plug in Chevy -- Last week consumer reports -- 92%. Of -- owning subscribers who responded to a survey. Said they will buy the car again. An actress then -- he can't resist the little bragging. We've taken so much grief for this. A five bucks compares that at one end -- staying together it's great 92 say it's great the other say it's good. There's no other car like this ever. I mean. They've taken so much heat on this report that ever bought. There is a problem. Problem is not making a lot of money. And me in any. In this second generation we think we're gonna take out some number on the order five to 101000 dollars depending on volume. See the full -- -- -- proselytizing this is unique car that has won this event. That's the cost at its current five. Now last for the Chevy Malibu it's gotten mixed reviews and that hasn't escaped the attention of the CEO. He says he personally liked the car. Nonetheless. We are going to. -- mid cycle on enhancement. Not dramatic by this time next year. And with efforts to create a global presence for Seve well underway. Akerson wants the same for GM's luxury mark Cadillac. Leading the charts. Caddies global chief Bob Ferguson his appointment raised eyebrows because Ferguson's background is in public policy and Telecom. They have global experience. Something the boss considers vital in an executive. Where regional brand. And to be a global brand in -- global. Oversight -- -- oversight and Bob has that assignment. Akerson says one way Cadillac can compete is by targeting younger buyers this segment of the luxury brand we need to be successful. Is in the small like -- Segment and that's the -- yes still he's beating up a whole lineup. Right now we are now have product and 80%. These luxury market we weren't there before. And that includes the PTS which is due for -- fresh next year. The mid luxury XTS. A new escalade SUV doings -- -- thirteen. And the plug NE LR. It's probably the best portfolio we've had been. The generation. To go back that far. Now we also ask -- about his views on technology. He says look for radical changes in the next few years -- GM in the forefront. Taylor crying and he says -- apples -- voice recognition system into cars is just the earth that. If you abroad and someone from apple here five years ago this whole industry would be radically different in this area of infotainment. And that's what we have quietly done. We've got people in from Lucent's bell labs. Some of the cares it's okay. Green sheet of paper -- clean sheet of paper. Go. -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- Or whether Ford doesn't or. Won't like does it will be it'll come faster than people think -- Later this week Akerson on car sales and the dangers of this booklet. For -- and is now I'm Lesley hale. Now the final installment in our exclusive interview with -- GM CEO Dan Akerson. As our Leslie Allen reports there's a big wildcard in GM's future. No this time it's not Europe or China. It's Washington DC. I think it is serious. And that's -- view on the phone call fiscal -- A series of automatic spending cuts and tax hikes that could soon take effect. That is unless congress and the president agree on a way to cut the deficit. -- that -- get the country's fiscal house in order. That'll provide certainty that I think people. Possibly sustain this. Recovery. He says the big risk if a drop in discretionary spending translation. Less money for people to buy cars. While some experts predict sales will hit 151000000. And 2013. Act person sees -- more conservative fourteen to fourteen point five million. That all presupposes that we don't fall off the cliff. I think I do think that could disrupt among third quarter -- not careful what you ask for more on actress and be sure to catch our talk from the top feature and Monday's print edition -- Automotive News. For -- and is now. I'm Leslie Allen.

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And as we get that business went up quite a bit because they split in the as far as their knowledge of the cars. And we had experts on east eat each particular manufacture. Displaced face increased at both sites. Before we knew he had eaten for a aren't directly to bloom who is our customers come yeah. Probably out acts of the while. is that I don't know what it does. Is the easy online. Or. Courtesy addict Chrysler and the Dodge Ram locations years ago. Meantime in crystal lake the Buick GMC store was also renovated. It had been a Pontiac site it changed the Buick GMC just before the free days the dealership in began the overhaul. The payoff from all that work we went from. Years ago is that courtesy groups on eighty. 400 cars so everything is going going in the right direction. new sales are up 30% this year repeat and referral business are also. We have to attribute to the the remodeled the dealerships and they and they wanna come back we wanna be apart of the courtesy. And the big thing we've heard is that customers that we went. I played a reinvestment of the community they they can see it they can see the investment community. And the three days aren't confining themselves to the prairie state they built a national customer list thanks to Internet sales. A month ago one of the drivers drove all the way to. Phoenix to deliver call. David Perry is one of 100 private contractors that deliver pick up cards for courtesy. It's about trust. I've had I've I had customers to tell me. Bad. They would never deal. Would anyone else. But the three days some are old customers another free day. senior worked for Ford Motor Co. for nearly two decades before opening up Ford dealership in house legal Illinois in 1991. He kept it for nineteen years. But that didn't exactly pressure that hits the follow his example. Obviously last that education that he did that is the way to school. When when the talent and they said Africa you know you guys who have do but don't sell cars in the first thing we did with cutters. We could've taken away give bag I would be excited I don't think went by that. It was in we can wait to get back. Spent about ten years working for their father he now works them as a consultant. To strengthen their work family the free taste promote from within managers Chris bell tee and Jeff they only work both started in Internet. Fail. To see the potential almost of bringing other people in to develop us and have must rise up. Throughout the dealership. Community service is a priority for the business. As is maintaining a work atmosphere. That's a much work has more and there than you'd like to be right now is we do. If that's the good thing is my thought we'd have yet to count. We get to do we get it. And people get their cars going Alive though it is a great thing that we get to go to work. With Rick focusing on crystal late and right and then they'll have the time they is that a little sibling rivalry. Well we did wild today on the you guys It. But the type. little spring. Without that we that we all he did tonight as simple problems that we are adamant be sixty. The three days are growing again. They say four. It is in the works reporting from there and bill and crystal lake Illinois I'm Leslie Allen.

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In planning perspectives annual survey that addresses that very issue. Ford ranked fourth out of sixth among major carmakers in North America this year good enough for an adequate ratings. It's gore just ahead of the average of nine companies studied. Last year Ford ranked third. While I'm I'm happy that we're doing better than the industry average better than some of our domestic competitors has clearly not good enough. Thai tang says he's making a concerted effort to improve in the area of communication. By reaching out to suppliers CEOs. These are very successful business people were running large global organization so we have a great opportunity to learn from them. What are they doing well how can we apply to afford. The manufacturer that and that's supplier relations study Toyota. The Japanese company made its first significant score improvement in this survey in seven years. Toyota's North American purchasing chief Robert Young saying the foundation of its relationship. Is between little weight and that kids. Continuous improvement and respect. principles which have been deployed. Really on on a global level which include. Open door policy always promoting fair competition. And maybe the key point is ensuring that we develop long term. Mutually beneficial relationships based on trust. Young says the automaker is just beginning accord development work on its new global architecture platform. The goal is to boost the number of parts shared among vehicles to improve quality and lower cost. Young says engaged in suppliers early in that process is vital. We're trying to front load up our collaboration with suppliers design and develop. You know the best commodity based solutions. For the vehicle programs is to look at the future of the uber successful. Over the next two years and we truly will have mutual benefit. By the end of the decade. Young says the challenge will be coordinating efforts both regionally and globally. We've done it before we've never done it really to this magnitude. And of that at the peak work load time that's something I'm a little concerned about. But we've been talking to our suppliers have linked how we prepare we improve our processes. Young also talking about initiatives under way at Rio to promote risk management. This all the supply chain disruptions from the Japanese earthquake and tsunami three years ago. We can only mitigate risk of we understand where those points are. And so based on that were working with our suppliers. As best we can and try to visualize supply chain through the tears. we understand where our product is coming from and we can identify where risk areas are. Both tank and young agreed that the overall goal is to achieve profitable growth for both automakers and suppliers. And speaking of profits is Harvard study by planning perspectives a researcher John hanky. 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